Christmas traditions abound but do you recall why we hang stockings by the fireplace? Here are some explanations:

#1. Legend claims that St. Nicholas tossed 3 pouches of gold coins down the chimney for 3 young girls who were destined to be spinsters after their father squandered their family fortune. The pouches landed in the stockings that were hanging there to dry.

#2. Christmas trees became popular in America in the 19th Century when Germans, who settled in Pennsylvania, brought with them the tradition that originated in their country.

#3. A jolly St. Nicholas actually lived during the 4th Century. He was a kind man who earned patron saint status for deeds that were thought to be miraculous. In Holland, Sinterklaas carried on the St. Nicholas legend. He left treats in the wooden shoes of the good children. Dutch colonists introduced the character to America in the 17th Century and Sinterklaas became Santa Claus.

As you participate in these traditions, also know that the main message of Christmas is a day for Christians to remember their faith and celebrate the birth of Christ. Merry Christmas!

Content provided by Oakland University. Source:


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