The Legend of Santa Claus

The Legend of Santa Claus

The Santa Claus, the most famous Christmas gift, bringer, is only 200years old.This Christmas figure has now become popular all over the world eclipsing other figures including the British Father Christmas.This name “Santa Claus” evolved from the Dutch use of the name St Nicholas (270-346).The Dutch used ‘Sinter Klass’ as a shortened form of “Sint Nikolaas” (i.e. Dutch words for Saint Nicholas).Parallel to the American Santa Claus, there are similar Christmas figures in other parts of the world; they are Father Christmas, Christmas Papa, Saint Nicholas or St Nikolaus, Sinterklaas, Kris Kringle, Pere Noel, Baba Noel, Joulupukki, Baboo Natale, Weihnachtsmann, Saint Basil and Father Frost.

In Italy, the principal bearer of gifts is not Santa Claus but La Befana.The Word “La Befana” is a corruption of “Epiphania”.According to Legend, La Befana was asked by the Magi to join them on their journey to worship the newborn king.When she took time to put her house in order before taking up the journey, she missed seeing child Jesus.Ever since she has wandered the globe seeking Jesus.On Epiphany, she brings present to children and leaves a bag of ashes for bad kids.

The Legend of Santa Claus goes back to St Nicholas, the bishop of Myra, a location in modern Turkey.It is said that he frequently visited the countryside helping the poor and the sick.In the course of time, his popularity grew and he became the protector of children and sailors.In 2809 Washington Irving popularized Sinter Klass stories by referring to him as the patron saint of New York in his book the History of New- York.Against the British influence of Father Christmas, the popular image of Santa Claus was created by the German-American cartoonist Thomas Nast (1840-1920); by the 1880s Nast’s portrait of Santa evolved into the form that we know today as Santa- Claus.Advertisers standardized the image of Santa Claus in the 1920s.In Latin American countries such as Venezuela and Columbia, people hold the tradition that Santa Claus gives toys to Baby Jesus and it is Infant Jesus who distributes them to children in their homes.

The above excerpt is taken from the Book “All About Christmas” written by Fr(dr) Sebastian Kizhakkeyil. Order Now: https://goo.gl/brRzCv

All about Christmas

Advertisements

“This Day You will be with me in Paradise.” The Second Word.

 

 

There is a legend to the effect that when, to escape the wrath of Herod, Saint Joseph, and the Blessed Virgin were fleeing into Egypt with the Divine Child, they stopped at a desert inn.The Blessed Mother asked the lady of the inn for water in which to bathe the Babe.The Lady then asked if she might not bathe her own child, who was suffering from leprosy, in the same waters in which the Divine Child had been immersed.Immediately upon touching those waters baptized with the Divine Presence, the child became whole.her child advanced in age and grew to be a theif.he is Dismas, now hanging on the Cross at the right hand of Christ! Whether the memory of the story his mother told him now came back to the thief and made him look kindly on Christ, we do not know.It might have been that his first meeting with the Saviour was on the day when his heart was filled with compunction on hearing the story of a certain man who went down from Jerusalem to Jericho and fell intimation that he was suffering with the Redeemer came to him as he turned his tortured head and read an inscription which bore His name, “Jesus”; His city, “Nazareth”; His crime, “King of the Jews”. At any rate, enough dry fuel of the right kind gathers on the altar of his soul, and now a spark from the central Cross falls upon it, creating in it a glorious illumination of faith.he sees a Cross and adores a Throne; he sees a condemned man, and invokes a King:”Lord, remember me when You come into Your kingdom.” Our Blessed Lord was owned at Last! Amidst the clamor of the raving crowd and the dismal universal hiss of sin, in all that delirium of  man’s revolt against God, no voice was lifted in praise and recognition except the voice of a man condemned.

It was a cry of faith in Him whom everyone else had forsaken, and it was only the testimony of a thief.If the son of the widow of Nain, who had been raised from the dead, had cried out a word of faith in the Kingdom of One who was seemingly losing His Kingdom; if Peter, who on the Mount of Transfiguration had seen His dace shine like the sun and His garments whiten like snow, had acknowledged Him; if the blind man of Jericho whose eyes were opened to the light of God’s sunshine had been opened anew to proclaim His Divinity, we should not have been surprised.Why, if any of these had cried out, perhaps the timid disciples and friends would have rallied, perhaps the scribes and Pharisees would have believed! But at the moment when death was upon Him, when defeat stared Him in the face, the only one outside the small group at the foot of the Cross to acknowledge Him as Lord of a kingdom, as the Captain of Souls, was a thief at the right-hand of Christ.

At the very moment when the testimony of a thief was given, Our Blessed Lord was winning a greater victory than any life can win, and was exerting a greater energy than that which harnesses waterfalls; he was losing His life and saving a soul.And on that day when Herod and his whole court could not make Him speak, nor all the power of Jerusalem make Him step down from the Cross, nor the unjust accusations of a court-room force Him to break silence, nor a mob crying,”He saved others; Himself He cannot save,” He turns to a quivering life beside Him, speaks, and saves a thief:” No one before was ever the object of such a promise, not even Moses nor John, not even Magdalen nor Mary!

It was the thief’s last prayer, perhaps also his first>He knocked once, sough once, asked once, dared everything and found everything.When our spirits stand with John on Patmos, we can see the white-stoled army in Heaven riding after the conquering Christ; when we stand with Luke on Calvary, we see the one who rode first in that procession.Christ, who was poor, died rich.His hands were nailed to a Cross and yet He unlocked the keys of Paradise and wons soul.His escort into heaven was a thief, May we not say that the thief died a thief, for he stole Paradise?

Oh, what greater assurance is there in all the world of the mercy of God? Lost sheep, prodigal sons, broken Magdalens, penitent Peters, forgiven thieves! Such is the rosary of Divine Forgiveness.

God is more anxious to save us than we are to save ourselves.There is a story told to the effect that one day Our Blessed Lord appeared to Saint Jerome, saying to him, “Jerome, what will you give Me?” Jerome answered,”I will give You my writings,” to which Our Lord replied that it was not enough.”Then,” said Jerome, : what shall I give You? My life of penance and mortification? But the answer was,”Even that is not enough!” “What have I left to give you? cried, Jerome.Our Blessed Lord answered,”Jerome, you can give Me your sins.”

This Article is taken from the book The Seven Last Words, Written by Fulton J.Sheen.

qqwww

 

 

Joseph, The Man of Prayer.

A Beautiful Article Written by one of the Famous writer Fulgence Hurhuria in his Book, St Joseph, The Silent Missionary.

Untitled design (9).png

Francis L.Filas, SJ, writes:” Joseph’s dignity required that he be proportionately holy; Joseph’s holiness grew out of the fact that the saint possessed such dignity.”

Now, what is meant by holiness? It refers to freedom from all that is evil, to a supernatural likeness to God, and to the possession of sanctifying grace, evangelical perfection: Perfect freedom from sin, intimate union with God, all ruled by the supreme norm of truth.

The Gospel of St Mathew gives explicit testimony to Joseph’s Holiness when it calls him a ‘just man’ (Mt 1:19), or ‘right minded”.The narrative of his life reveals his magnificent character even more pointedly.Among the great virtues he manifested are his unwavering faith, deep humility, consummate prudence, virginal chastity and instant obedience.These are the effects appearing on the surface, as it were, that connote an underlying love of God which brings the saint to a high order of sanctity” (Joseph Most Just, Bruce Publishing Company, Milwaukee, U.S.A. 1956, p. 42. 18).

Joseph’s heart, as a matter of fact, was so habitually absorbed in God, that his whole life was a continual prayer. His soul thus receiving a daily increase of virtues produced abundant fruits for eternal life. Joseph’s faith was deeply rooted in God and was in continual union with Him through prayer. He offered his Maker nothing special, neither bull, nor goat, nor lamb, just his whole being for the love of Him with his ordinary daily deeds, thereby sanctifying himself. God was so pleased with Joseph, that He elevated him to the dignity of the spouse of the Mother of God and the foster father of the Divine Master. No saint had such a privilege.

The cause of Joseph’s holiness was obviously his prayer life — a perfect example of a person who has understood its importance, its significance, and its advantages, has immersed himself in it. We may safely believe that it was with this holy exercise that he began and sanctified his days, his actions, his every move. Indeed, it is not for nothing that Joseph is honored as a father, model, and formator of the contemplative souls. St Bernadine of Siena says that he had received the gift of prayer to a very high degree. St Teresa relates that she always noticed that those who prayed to St Joseph with confidence made rapid progress in mental prayer. Is it for nothing then that the Church invokes him as a formator and master of contemplation?

It was the prayer that helped Joseph keep himself habitually in the presence of God, whereby he was frequently favored with heavenly communications. And in a special way, he was made known the mysteries of the incarnation, suffering, death, and resurrection of his foster son Jesus, and thus so to say, the redemption of humankind. Not only his mind and heart, but his whole person was entirely filled with the continual providence and presence of God in recollection, so much so that even his daily labor could cause him no distraction. He was thus able to follow the inspirations of grace and accomplish in all things the designs of God.

It was not only the habitual thought of God that regulated the life and actions of Joseph; rather, God Himself was present before him in the person of Jesus Christ. Most truly might he exclaim with St John: “We saw His glory, the glory as it were, of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth” (Jn 1:14). After the Blessed Virgin, St Joseph was the first human being to see the newborn Messiah.he spent thirty years of his life with Jesus, Living with Him under the same roof, sharing his meals with Him, watching Him at play, prayer, and work.Even sleep did not interrupt the Holy Patriarch’s union with his ‘son’, Lord, and Master, Jesus Christ.

You can find such Article in the Book St Joseph, The Silent Missionary.  Available Now!

The Book touches on St Joseph's life actually makes up for what is lacking in sacred scripture concerning him.