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The Mountain in the Oldest City in the World

When I opened our front door today, what I saw was mountains.  Where I live, we are surrounded by mountains.   When you look right, there are mountains. When you look left, there are mountains. I never thought mountains in the winter could be so beautiful. The shades of gray and white turn into almost lavender, and the trees look like leaves upon a bushy hill. In my younger days, I had my fill of mountains but if there is one mountain I would’ve wanted to climb, it is found in the oldest city in the world. This is the mountain found in Jericho.   It is not a pretty sight as it is mostly ground with rock surfaces but it surprisingly has a water source.   On the mountain, there are centuries-old monasteries and a chapel built out of the rock, ravaged by wars.  There is an ancient, sacred seat that was where Jesus sat during his time of temptation ( Luke 4:1-13) Many places in Israel have churches over sacred spots where Jesus walked, but on this mountain, I fancied myself touching a tree

Saint Nicholas of Myra, Miracle Worker

 

Saint Nicholas of Myra, Miracle Worker


In the ancient Turkish city of Myra in the 4th century lived a holy priest who was known to be kind to all, especially in defense of the wrongly accused.  He seemed to always be there in times of need and was so generous that many say he was the true Santa Claus.


There was a man so desperately poor that he was contemplating selling his daughters to the brothel.  Saint Nicholas rushed to their aid and in the middle of the night threw 3 bags of gold into their window, saving the whole family from starvation.  Since then the symbol for pawn shops became 3 golden balls.


On another occasion, three young boys were murdered and were hidden in a barrel of brine. Saint Nicolas heard of this dastardly deed and prayed over the dead boys. Miraculously, they came back to life!  This is why he became a patron of children and barrel makers. 


Even hardened criminals changed their lives because of Saint Nicholas.  He disturbed their consciences, and robbers would return their loot to the owners. This is why he became the patron against theft and robbery.   In times past, thieves were known as the Knights of Saint Nicholas


He is also known as a patron of sailors because his prayers saved a sinking ship.


He is the patron of many people such as newlyweds, sweethearts, maidens, paupers, and pilgrims.  He is also an intercessor in cases of fires and robberies.


Today, December 6th is his feast day.  Saint Nicholas of Myra, please pray for us!

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