Why St. Nicholas gives presents to children

Elena was from Nikolaev, Ukraine. Yes, the town in the Ukraine that Catherine the Great named after Patron Saint Nikolai to protect the ships and sailors from this ship building town. Elena is now in Heaven with St. Nikolas.

St Nicholas
Illustration for Ukrainian commemorative coin, 2016

Why does St. Nicholas give presents to children?

So children will love and believe in him. When children believe in St. Nicholas, it is easy for them to believe in heaven, for he lives in heaven. It is easy for them to believe in our God who created heaven.

The purpose of the gifts should not be to reward children, but to help them remember heaven. The gifts are just a little sweetness here on earth to remind us of the true sweetness we will find later with God.

Your parents put gifts in St. Nicholas' name. But we do this to help you learn about something you can't see with your eyes—to help you believe in something which is not of this world, but is still very real.

A miracle is something which is in this world, but not of this world—a bit of heaven on earth. And that's what St. Nicholas is.

From Michael Frederikson, Minneapolis, Minnesota. Used by permission.

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