Book of Saints – Saint Nicholas

detail of a stained glass window of Saint Nicholas of Bari; by James Powell and Sons, 1904; chapel of Saint Nicholas, cathedral of Saint David, Wales; photographed on 21 July 2011 by Wolfgang Sauber; swiped from Wikimedia CommonsArticle

December 6

Nicholas was the fourth-century bishop of Myra, a city in Asia Minor. He was very generous to the poor.

Once Nicholas heard that a man who had become very poor intended to abandon his three daughters to a life of sin. He went out by night, threw a bag of gold into the window of the sleeping father, and hurried away. Later the father fell at his feet and said: “Nicholas, you are my helper. You have delivered my soul and my daughters’ from hell.”

The Emperor Justinian built a church in his honor at Constantinople about the year 340. The Russian Church honors him more than any other saint. He is the patron of Russia.

Saint Nicholas is honored as the special patron of children. The word Santa Claus comes from his name.

He died at Myra in the year 342. He has always been venerated in the Latin and Greek Churches. His relics are in Bari, Italy.

MLA Citation

  • Father Lawrence George Lovasik, S.V.D.. “Saint Nicholas”. Book of Saints. CatholicSaints.Info. 7 January 2019. Web. 10 July 2020. <>