He was bishop of Myra, in Lycia (now part of Turkey) and died about the middle of the fourth century. He has been venerated throughout the Church, especially since the 10th century. Because of his help to the poor he is the patron saint of pawnbrokers, whose insignia of three golden balls represent the three purses of gold he is said to have given secretly to a poor man who could not afford dowries for his three daughters. "
Gracious and good Lord,
we bless you on this feast of St. Nicholas, your servant,
who is an example to us of a life of charity and love.
May we see in his life an invitation to imitate his good deeds.
Make us always mindful of the needs of others
and help us rejoice in the abundance of your goodness around us.
Through Jesus our Lord. Amen.