St. Nicholas day: What you need to know about the holiday

День святого Николая: Что нужно знать о празднике

In Ukraine, December 19 celebrate the Day of Saint Nicholas, the patron Saint of children and travelers.

Saint Nicholas (or Nikolaus), who is now considered a character of folklore, was a Byzantine Bishop, famous for his love of children and helping the poor. He carried his Ministry in ancient Lycia, the city of Peace (this area is located near the modern Turkish town of Demre).

There are many legends about the good deeds of St. Nicholas. So, one day, Nicholas decided to help the three sisters because of poverty, no one wanted to marry. The night he dropped it through the chimney three bags of gold coins. After helping sisters Nikolaus continued to help the poor citizens undetected and surprising the city. He brought home toys and warm clothes for children, medicines for the sick. And most importantly, Nikolaus was doing it not for fame, but secretly and sincerely. One night people wanted to track someone who helps everyone, and was amazed that he was a young Nikolai. After that, local residents elected him as their Bishop.

Making the pilgrimage to Jerusalem, Nicholas, at the request of travelers calmed the raging sea. Thanks to his prayer revived the sailor fell from a mast to his death. Holding the sword of the executioner, Saint Nicholas saved from death three men, innocent prisoners greedy mayor.

After the death of the Bishop of the city began to occur miracles: patients who came to his tomb were healed, and the image of Nicholas defended people on long journeys and life’s troubles. Nicholas considered the closest to God the Holy Ghost, the mediator between God and men.

St. Nicholas day is a welcome holiday for children. Eve the kids write letters to him with the wishes and drop them in the mailbox or put on the window, asking primarily the health of yourself and your parents. The day before the holiday the children remember all their good and evil deeds and weighed, any more. Polite and obedient kids will find under my pillow a gift, but naughty – a cane.

Some countries believe that the children Saint Nicholas comes not alone, but with an accompanying entourage. It includes two angels, who shall inform the patron of obedient children, and two Jack, who will report to St. Nicholas about all the antics of kids.

In modern times there is a good tradition: on the day of St. Nicholas to care for orphans and disadvantaged children, giving them gifts.

It is believed that the feast of Nicholas, the last day of the year when you can pay off debt, because he a miracle worker regularly shared with the needy.

Once the owners of this day brewed beer, invited guests, walked, had fun. And after dinner, harness the best horses, and songs have traveled around the village, “because you have to know slippery the snow this year fell”. The old-timers believed that all the evil that comes among the people, arose precisely because now no one brews beer the Holy.

In Kharkiv, it was the custom to celebrate the three-day Nicolini Yuletide, which was cooked Christmas pudding and uzvar to next year to ensure the harvest of rye and fruit. In Western Ukraine to this day baked special cookies – “Nikolas”, who put the kids under the pillow along with other gifts.

On the tail who comes first in the morning at home, he will be the first “polaznika”. “Palusami” are four days a year: an Introduction, Nicholas, Anna and Christmas or New year. These days also the first to cross the yard to the owner and nobody else. Each owner stands to this day earlier than usual, and goes to feed the cattle. Arriving at the barn, says, “God Forbid, good day to jugobanka healthy, and I’m with you still with his wife!”.

In kiyevshchina the owner came to the day of the Church, took a bowl of consecrated water, bread with a lump of salt was sprinkled farming, cattle and grain, saying: “Saint Nicholas, have mercy and save us from all evil.”

Girls from that time began the preparation for Christmas: sewed new clothes, preparing for the Christmas divination.

SV. Nicholas takes care of soldiers, drivers and travelers, helps the poor in difficulty, is the patron Saint of children and students, sailors, merchants, and archers.

In folk tales Saint Nicholas protects people before the disaster, and especially on the water. All Odessa fishermen in their tents was the image of St. Nicholas. Going to sea to fish, the fishermen always took the image of St. Nicholas the Wonderworker.

Say “if Nicholas will rain, it will be a good harvest for the winter”. And if it’s cold, you will give birth to the abundant vegetables. In modern Ukraine St. Nicholas Day starts the winter holidays, many cities are opened the Christmas tree.