Nicholas, the Superstar among the saints

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All years: In the night of the 6. December, St Nicholas fills the boots of children, at least in some regions of Europe. In America, Saint Nicholas experienced as Santa Claus is a Renaissance.

  • Nicholas – a man and his Mission

    On-the-go, with staff and mitre

    Nicholas was a Bishop in the 4th Century. He lived in Myra, today Demre in Turkey. According to the legend, the son of wealthy parents should have distributed his whole fortune among the poor. St Nicholas is considered to be the harbinger of the Christ child and has become an almost everywhere well-known symbol of the Christmas season.

  • Nicholas – a man and his Mission

    Mass start

    St. Nicholas modeled, was in the United States in 1931, Santa Claus in the typical red-and-white costume as an advertising medium for a brown lemonade invented. Nowadays, this also shows to sporting events, like the Santa run in Michendorf in Brandenburg.

  • Nicholas – a man and his Mission

    Cold feet no Problem!

    At the annual world Congress of Santa clauses in Copenhagen, capital of Denmark, in the summer, over a hundred men, and recently more and more women from 15 Nations fit for your stressful Christmas.

  • Nicholas – a man and his Mission

    On Dive Station

    Even special orders, such as the feeding of fish in the 250,000-litre Aquarium of Multimar watt forum in Schleswig-Holstein, Tönning be done by the Nicholas followers promptly.

  • Nicholas – a man and his Mission

    The current Band

    A Nicholas good enough to eat has been around since 1820. The first copies were still made entirely out of chocolate. Meanwhile, poured into molds and hollow on the inside be invite in Germany every year around 150 million chocolate Santas made.

  • Nicholas – a man and his Mission

    Good Cop, Bad Cop

    In many Catholic communities, St. Nicholas of Knecht Ruprecht. With rod and Sack, threatening naughty children. In France he is known as Père Fouettard, in the Netherlands as Zwarte Piet, in Switzerland Schmutzli and Krampus in Austria and southern Germany.

  • Nicholas – a man and his Mission

    With a large entourage

    Wild in fur and straw, the so-called “Buttnmandl”, follow up with Glock a close rattle, and loud cries of the Nicholas from house to house to expel the evil spirits. In the Berchtesgadener Land, the ancient pagan Ritual, was integrated in the course of time, in the Christian tradition, and is every year on the 5. and 6. December is a popular spectacle.

  • Nicholas – a man and his Mission

    Friendly visit

    In the choice of the means of locomotion, a Nicholas needs to be flexible. Whether in Cycling in Germany, reindeer in Finland, or a DROMEDARY, as here, on the Red sea in Egypt, thanks to a white beard, fur verbrämtem coat and cap is also guaranteed in the Muslim regions of the recognition effect.

  • Nicholas – a man and his Mission

    In Lightning Speed

    This photo of a speed camera the police shows Nicholas with his Chauffeur on the road in Munich. The vehicle had exceeded the allowed 50 km/h to ten kilometers per hour. In view of the deadline pressure under which the “Saint Nicholas” on the verge of 6. December works, left it to the guards with a warning.

  • Nicholas – a man and his Mission

    High flyer

    As Nicholas manages to appear at the same time in different places around the world, will probably always remain his secret. It is clear that he comes back next year and also the sky above the lake of Geneva, staying on course.

    Author: Ille, Simon


  • Nicholas – a man and his Mission

    On-the-go, with staff and mitre

    Nicholas was a Bishop in the 4th Century. He lived in Myra, today Demre in Turkey. According to the legend, the son of wealthy parents should have distributed his whole fortune among the poor. St Nicholas is considered to be the harbinger of the Christ child and has become an almost everywhere well-known symbol of the Christmas season.

  • Nicholas – a man and his Mission

    Mass start

    St. Nicholas modeled, was in the United States in 1931, Santa Claus in the typical red-and-white costume as an advertising medium for a brown lemonade invented. Nowadays, this also shows to sporting events, like the Santa run in Michendorf in Brandenburg.

  • Nicholas – a man and his Mission

    Cold feet no Problem!

    At the annual world Congress of Santa clauses in Copenhagen, capital of Denmark, in the summer, over a hundred men, and recently more and more women from 15 Nations fit for your stressful Christmas.

  • Nicholas – a man and his Mission

    On Dive Station

    Even special orders, such as the feeding of fish in the 250,000-litre Aquarium of Multimar watt forum in Schleswig-Holstein, Tönning be done by the Nicholas followers promptly.

  • Nicholas – a man and his Mission

    The current Band

    A Nicholas good enough to eat has been around since 1820. The first copies were still made entirely out of chocolate. Meanwhile, poured into molds and hollow on the inside be invite in Germany every year around 150 million chocolate Santas made.

  • Nicholas – a man and his Mission

    Good Cop, Bad Cop

    In many Catholic communities, St. Nicholas of Knecht Ruprecht. With rod and Sack, threatening naughty children. In France he is known as Père Fouettard, in the Netherlands as Zwarte Piet, in Switzerland Schmutzli and Krampus in Austria and southern Germany.

  • Nicholas – a man and his Mission

    With a large entourage

    Wild in fur and straw, the so-called “Buttnmandl”, follow up with Glock a close rattle, and loud cries of the Nicholas from house to house to expel the evil spirits. In the Berchtesgadener Land, the ancient pagan Ritual, was integrated in the course of time, in the Christian tradition, and is every year on the 5. and 6. December is a popular spectacle.

  • Nicholas – a man and his Mission

    Friendly visit

    In the choice of the means of locomotion, a Nicholas needs to be flexible. Whether in Cycling in Germany, reindeer in Finland, or a DROMEDARY, as here, on the Red sea in Egypt, thanks to a white beard, fur verbrämtem coat and cap is also guaranteed in the Muslim regions of the recognition effect.

  • Nicholas – a man and his Mission

    In Lightning Speed

    This photo of a speed camera the police shows Nicholas with his Chauffeur on the road in Munich. The vehicle had exceeded the allowed 50 km/h to ten kilometers per hour. In view of the deadline pressure under which the “Saint Nicholas” on the verge of 6. December works, left it to the guards with a warning.

  • Nicholas – a man and his Mission

    High flyer

    As Nicholas manages to appear at the same time in different places around the world, will probably always remain his secret. It is clear that he comes back next year and also the sky above the lake of Geneva, staying on course.

    Author: Ille, Simon


Even in the age of Tablets, and game consoles of Saint Nicholas in early December in many Parts of Europe for large children’s eyes, and hilarious parents. In America, however, it is to see the bearded man on the first Christmas, when “Santa Claus” brought by Chimneys, squeezes and children gifts.

But that may change maybe In snowy Michigan Carol Myers operates the “St. Nicholas centre”, a virtual information centre on the life of the man who is celebrated today in many Parts of the world as Santa Claus. It also operates a Nicholas exhibition that moves from city to city through the United States and the legends that have formed worldwide-the Nicholas, of Americans.

A post card of the St. Nicholas Center

“When my children were small, I wanted to show you that the story of ‘Santa Claus’ is based on a people of faith. The St. Nicholas day was so as a perfect opportunity for us to talk about Saint Nicholas,” says Myers with enthusiasm. You profess yourself as a Fan of the pioneer of the American Santa Claus cult.

“Our home town in Michigan was founded by Dutch immigrants, and maintains many of the customs from the Netherlands. Therefore, it is not difficult for us, also the Nicholas in the advent of time. Also, since the boots in front of the door.”

Sodas-Santa Claus?

The number of Americans who discover St. Nicholas, or re-discover, seems to be growing steadily. The people will probably be more and more conscious that the idea of “Santa Claus” is based on a European basis and not on a successful Coca-Cola marketing campaign, which has operated in the 1930s, convenient to the red-and-white colors of this Nicholas coat, to advertise for the soft drink. In contrast to Coca-Cola, there is St. Nicholas for almost two millennia. In addition, he is also one of the few saints that has survived the consequences of the Reformation, to a large extent.

It is said that Martin Luther has moved the mess from the sixth of December, to Christmas, St. Nicholas – lose, like all the other saints in the Protestant Church – importance. Succeeded him, but not really, as more churches to St. Nicholas to be baptized than to all other saints. Only exception: the Holy Mary.

Coca-Cola has been advertising since the 1930s, with Nicholas (Snapshot from the DW show Camarote.21)

Carol Myers claimed, lies in the fact that St. Nicholas is ready for all people – regardless of their Faith – joy. Since it is also, in principle, whether the children look forward to St. Nicholas or “Santa Claus”. “Nowadays, many people the Christmas season, want to give more importance. No matter whether you are religious or not. Many people think that it is about much more than consumerism,” explains Myers.

A Saint for all Christians

“And in the case of the Christians is also a wide range of people coming together there. Saint Nicholas is one of the most important saints in the Orthodox Church and is also celebrated by Catholics. Even in the case of many Protestants, he is popular,” says the engaged woman, whose popular web site is visited annually by over a Million users.

Prof. Adam English teaches theology and philosophy at Campbell University in the state of North Carolina. He also believes that the Nicholas breaks the usual boundaries of faith and brings people together, any kind of attitude: “unlike many of The other saints that are mostly venerated by only a very few deeply religious Christians, St. Nicholas is also the non-believers and even the unbelievers. He blows up all of the frame. What makes him so attractive, that all of the many conflicts in the history of the Church joined with him in the Background. What is in the foreground, are the children,” reports Prof. of English in an Interview with DW.

In a Shoe a lot of space for little Surprises…

In his book, “The Saint, the Christmas man was” exploring English, the true and moving story of the Holy St. Nicholas. “The man moves in wide circles. The Nicholas is revered around the world – from Argentina to Iceland. He is considered the patron Saint of Russia and Greece. And, of course, he is especially the patron Saint of children,” says Professor English.

In the footsteps of Jesus

The story of the man behind St. Nicholas, is just as complex as the many customs that honor the sacred in all over the world. Bishop Nicholas of Myra came in the third century in the Roman Empire to the world, near the small town of Demre in the South of present-day Turkey.

As the Eastern Roman Empire became gradually in the Byzantine Empire, there were riots because of the increasing social division of the citizens. He tried to mediate the Dispute, and used his inherited wealth to his fellow-men. So he should have a dowry for three girls paid to save them from Prostitution. He saved Innocent people who were sentenced to death, and distributed food to the Starving.

“He designed his life according to the example of Jesus and helped the poor, women, and children. Because of his dedication he was later to Holy professions. That was for someone who had fallen, in contrast to most of the other saints not martyred victims, rather unusual,” says Carol Myers, from the “St. Nicholas centre”. As a young Bishop of Myra, he was moving at the time also Much in the young Christianity. “So he took part at the first Council of Nicaea, where the Christian creed of his first moves was accepted.”

The visit of the Bishop Nicholas, on the eve of the 6. December is for centuries for the children of the first peak in the run-up to Christmas

“Nicholas is coming!”

Nowadays, you might think Nicholas usually only to friends, children and – according to Adam English – “less to do with the real story and the real people on the all of these joys of the Christmas season.” Nevertheless, he stresses that he, too, was looking forward every year again on the Christmas season. And that it to him not matter whether all the traditions and customs are directly related to the life of St. Nicholas or not.

“A lot of people claim, that we have forgotten the true meaning and purpose of the Christmas season, and all about the fun and consumption,” said English in an interview with DW. “But it is quite healthy to have fun and to laugh and to be able to change how the children laugh at themselves. And that is precisely why we need the Nicholas to have as an example of how you can have a laugh as the children and even the children can have fun.”