As a wealthy Christian, Saint Nicholas felt called by God to help the poor by doing good deeds. His acts of kindness sowed the seed of the tradition of giving gifts at Christmas and placing them in a stocking.
Before he was called a Saint, Nicholas was an orphan who inherited great wealth from his family. Born in modern-day Turkey in AD c.280, he was raised as a Christian during times of persecution and believed he could use his wealth to help the needy. Cautious of the Lord Jesus’ teaching in Matthew 6 to give with a pure heart, he gained a reputation for secret giving. What precisely took place is unknown, but legend states he once heard of a poor man whose daughters could be sold into prostitution. To save them from destitution, he put money into a bag and threw it into their home at night and…