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Catholics celebrate the Saint Nicholas’s feast day on December 6th. This was the first feast day that we incorporated when we learned what liturgical living was. It is a fun little celebration at the beginning of Advent, and our kids love it and look forward to it every year!

Catholic Saint Nicholas

Who was Saint Nicholas?

St. Nicholas lived in the 4th century, and was the bishop of Myra. He came from a wealthy family, and, sadly, his parents died when he was young.

He is the patron of Russia, Greece, sailors, and children.

There are many amazing miracles attributed to Saint Nicholas, but the most famous is where many traditions related to “Santa Claus” come from. 

The most famous story is about a widowed man and his 3 daughters. The man was very poor and could not afford to pay for his daughters’ doweries to get married. He was so desperate that he was going to sell them into slavery.

St. Nicholas heard about this, and snuck to the house at night. He threw a bag of gold coins into the window and they landed in a stocking or shoe. The first daughter could now get married. 

St. Nicholas visited again two more times leaving 2 more bags of gold coins. His generosity allowed all 3 daughters to be married since the father could now pay for their doweries. 

St. Nicholas is the perfect saint to celebrate leading up to the Christmas season since he is known for his enormous generosity!

How to celebrate St. Nicholas's feast day in your home

There are lots of beautiful and simple ways to celebrate this feast day! If you are new to liturgical living the Catholic year, I highly recommend planning to celebrate the feast of St. Nicholas with your family!

1. Go to Mass

This is a given for any Catholic feast! Attend Mass as a family and pray for St. Nicholas’s intercession while you are there. Especially pray for your children since he is the patron of children!

2. Hang your stockings and leave out your shoes on December 5th

This tradition is so fun. In order to make Advent feel like a time of watching and waiting, we put up our decorations little by little over the 25 days. On the night of December 5th we hang our stockings and leave out our shoes.

Then, we wait for St. Nicholas to come and leave goodies! Traditional goodies to leave are oranges or clementines and chocolate coins. Some families also give their children Christmas socks and pajamas. 

Here are more cute gift ideas!

Saint Nicholas Feast Day
Catholic Saint NIcholas

3. Donate some toys for children in need

Some parishes will collect gifts or toys for children to give them at Christmas. What better way to celebrate St. Nicholas’s generous spirit than to be generous ourselves! It’s also a great lesson in generosity for our children.

4. Make a St. Nicholas treat

Since St. Nicholas was a bishop, crozier (staff) inspired treats are a must! The candy cane is an obvious choice, and the colors (red and white) symbolize Christ’s passion (red) and purity (white). You can enjoy some traditional candy canes or make easy candy cane cookies. Just crush some mini candy canes (about half per cookie) and press them on top of your favorite sugar cookie recipe when there are 1-2 minutes left of baking. 

Another awesome treat is this beautiful and yummy crozier pastry. This makes a delicious breakfast and it’s pretty!

Catholic Saint Nicholas

5. Do a St. Nicholas craft

We always love a good craft, and Catholic Icing has a bunch! We love displaying our St. Nicholas peg dolls and other printables.

Saint Nicholas

6. Read a St. Nicholas book

There are so many awesome books about St. Nicholas! This one contains lots of awesome and less known stories about this awesome saint. 

Catholic Saint Nicholas Feast Day

Will you be celebrating St. Nicholas’s feast day this year? Please let me know in the comments! I would love to hear any other St. Nicholas family traditions from you as well!

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