Archive for the Nicholas of Myra Category

Feast Day of Saint Nicholas of Myra, in memory of Moses.

Posted in Ilya Repin, Moses, Nicholas of Myra, Philadelphia, R.I.P. on December 6, 2010 by babylonbaroque

I had been planning this post as today is the feast day of Blessed Nicholas of Myra, patron of thieves, sailors, students, and children. Unfortunately yesterday was an unhappy day here in Babylon,our dear cat Moses had to be put down.

I dedicate this post to his fuzzy memory.

Saint Nicholas of Myra

270 AD

6th December 336 AD

The Bishop of Myra, Nicholas is often referred to as Nikolas the Wonderworker, he is the model for our beloved Sinterklaas, Santa Claus.

As the Wonderworker, the Bishop was known for many miracles.

 

This 19th century prayer card illustrates one such miracle, a particularly grisly tale. A famine had struck , starvation rampant, an evil Butcher lures three little boys to his home, the Evil butcher swiftly slaughters the wee ones, expertly butchering them and cures them as hams for market. Beloved Nicholas, sees through this false marketing and resurrects the little ones.

Tales like this little gem are the reason I cannot abandon the Church.

The following image by the masterful Ilya Repin illustrates a similar tale but I have yet found specifics. It is of course a marvelous image, Repin spun magic.

Saint nicholas of Myra Saves Three Innocents from Death

1888

Ilya Yefimovich Repin

1844-1930

The State Russian Museum

Nicholas is of course most famous for his charity.

The most famous tale being of a poor fellow with three young daughters ( three being a theme);poor fellow is unable to provide a dowry for the lasses. Nichiolas seeing the man’s dire situation saves the girls from a life of slavery and prostitution. Nicholas also spares the fellow’s pride by tossing three bags of gold through an open window.

Another tale, is Nicholas tosses the bags down the chimney, in their descent they land in the stockings that have been left by the hearth to dry.

Gentile De Fabriano

ca, 1425

We have certainly strayed a bit from the origin of this tale in the excesses of our  celebration of Christmas.

We may have strayed, but Nicholas understood his charity as symbolic of a greatness beyond his own actions.

He is famous for saying”The Giver of every good and perfect gift has called upon us to mimic His giving, by grace, through faith, and this is not of ourselves”.

I need to keep that in mind.

The Virgin and Child with St. Julian and St. Nicholas of Myra

ca. 1490-92

Lorenzo Di Credi

Musée de Louvre

A novena to Saint Nicholas , Bishop of Myra is available here.

As I mentioned we lost our dear cat Moses yesterday.

Moses was fourteen, born on the streets of Philly, feral, spooked, and beautiful.

He suffered from an anxiety that left him ambivalent about affection.

He demanded love, yet would swat you away if you nuzzled too closely.

Moses was a grey Manx, he hopped like a bunny perhaps due to the absence of a tail.

Poor bugger suffered with cystitis throughout the fourteen years, awakening us in his kittenhood with the most chilling scream. He continued with painful outbreaks throughout his life; we dealt with them as best as we could.

For the most part we managed his suffering, he rewarded us with dead lizards he proudly hunted down.

Moses 1996

His anxiety and grumpiness earned him the nickname Moses Bin Laden.

He was a funny boy, demanding, affectionate, vocal.

We missed not hearing his 6 am wake up yowl this morning.

Recquiscat in Pace Moses.

Moses

1996

5th December 2010

Take care dear boy.

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