Cohorts of Santa’s are waiting patiently in most of the stores at this time of the year, alluring the passersby, children and adults alike. They smile, they play, some of them can even dance! With a full bag of surprises, they get eventually a foster house, where cheerful families, longing for the most desired and festive celebration of the year, need a headman for their other decorations.
I always feel super excited when I see so many colourful decorations, and the music plays everywhere, when the stores are super busy with people moving scurrying around, looking for a proper gift. Sometimes I feel intimidated, because it is so hard to chose new ornaments. While I do not over decorate our home, I try to put a personal note every year, as I do not consider necessary to spend lavishly on the eye-catching stuff from every store. Although I want them all😊
Christmas, the most preferred annual celebration for many, is a Christian festival celebrating the birth of Jesus on the 25th of December. For almost 2000 years, this date is seen as one of the most sacred religious holidays in the world. While it is an important feast for Christians, Christmas became a festive season for so many others: it is a great reason to decorate houses, get together with families and friends, best time for making plans, exchange gifts, to be kind and generous, be thankful for what we have, and share some joy and good deeds. I could count on and on, there are so many other reasons to celebrate the Winter Holidays!
Although the origin of assigning December 25th as the birth of Jesus is unclear, it was widely accepted at some point. The Christmas mass, the carols, the practice of giving gifts, the Christmas tree, and Santa joined the celebration over time, but..
Who is actually Santa Claus?
Santa Claus, known by many names, is definitely the most beloved person ever! And what is not to love? He is joyful, brings presents, and everybody loves this!
Simply called Santa, it’s the most legendary character in the Western Christian culture who brings gifts and toys to well-behaved children on Christmas Eve. He became popular in the United States and Canada in the 19th century due to a famous poem from 1823: “A Visit from St. Nicholas’. Hmm, but..
Who is Saint Nicholas?
Nicholas of Myra, who lived in the third century in Myra, Asia Minor (nowadays Turkey) was a man of many legends. A very pious man from early age, was known best for his good deeds he did all his life, using his parents’ inheritance to help the poor and the ones in need, becoming one of the most known early Christian saints. Though many legends and stories are disputed, St Nicholas generosity and accomplishments played the main role in spreading his popularity in Northern Europe, where “Sint Nikolas” or “Sinter Klaas” became later Santa Claus of modern days.
Both Catholic and Eastern Orthodox churches celebrate St Nicholas on December 6, the date of his passing, and his legendary way of secret gift-giving preceded his name in all Europe, and later around the world. The night of 5th to 6th of December, St Nicholas will leave sweets, coins, or other gifts in all well-behaved children’s shoes, of those who left them out for him.
Beside the legends and other stories, the Christmas spirit is right here! Beside the fact that Christmas is becoming more and more a commercial phenomenon, there is always time to be generous, to be kind, and caring. We feel uplifted especially this month, and although we should be generous and considerate for the whole year, we remember even more this time of the year those less fortunate.
This year I decided to ‘play’ Santa, and I found this isn’t bad at all😊 While I was packing some presents for ‘The Pampering Night’ organized by my friend Gabi for a campaign she is running every year actually, for the Women in Transitional Living House Program from YWCA in Hamilton, Ontario, I was just thinking that is never too late to believe in humankind, in kindness, and friendship. Sometime it’s enough to give few good words, and most of the time some love.
Jolly days came in the city
With a face that is too pretty,
Songs and toys and all together
And no one to care the weather.
Parents, children, all excited
Everything is now so lighted,
Skates and sleds came in the stores
Mittens, hats behind the doors.
Time for shopping, time for thinking
Is there anyone who’s sinking?
Lonely children, lonely mothers
And reflecting on the others.
This is the month of December
Everybody to remember,
With a gift or with a thought
Doesn’t mean to be a lot.
Time for giving or forgiving
Doesn’t matter who’s believing
There are so too many ways
To have Happy Holidays!
Hope St Nicholas brought you many gifts, especially a lot of happiness and love. Have a wonderful Holiday Season to all of you and to your dear ones!