St. Nick still a saint of the people

The Holy Bishop of Myra, St. Nicholas, held court at the Maria Stein Shrine during a recent visit there, sharing his history and pausing for photos with young visitors.
Bob Blindauer
Staff Writer

The children had lined up their shoes in a row outside the chapel at the Shrine of the Holy Relics early on a Sunday afternoon. Their colorful portrait renditions of the venerable old saint had been hung on the wall above the shoes. Now they waited inside the chapel with their moms and dads, many of them too young to know what to expect. They and their parents sang together, offered prayer, heard a reading and then a litany which gave a little background on the character of the saint they had come to meet and greet.

Also known as the Holy Bishop of Myra, St. Nicholas is the patron of children and seafarers, gift giver, friend of the needy, guide of the penitent sinner, and the saint who points to the Manger, among other titles. When he appeared coming through the chapel doors, resplendent in his red bishop’s vestments, cape and mitre carrying his shepherd’s staff, they were ready to be inspired.

He recounted how he had been...

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