Today is the Feast of St Nicholas the Wonderworker (+330), Archbishop of Myra (see the Prologue from Ohrid).
Desirous of retiring to a life of prayer in Jerusalem, Nicholas was instead sent by God to the people of Myra (modern Demre) to be their bishop and protector. He is celebrated for his generous almsgiving, for his defence of the unjustly accused, and for the many, many thousands of miracles by his intercession.
GLORY be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.
WE GATHERING lovers of the feast, let us raise hymns in songs of praise of the ornament of hierarchs, the glory of the Fathers, the fount of wonders, and the greatest helper of the faithful, saying:
Rejoice, guardian, and reverend leader, and immoveable pillar of the people of Myra.
Rejoice, O brightest blazing beacon, casting radiance to the bounds of the world by thy wonders.
Rejoice, divine gladness of the afflicted, most fervent protector of the wronged.
And now, O all blessed Nicholas, cease not in interceding to Christ God, for those who ever honour, in faith and in longing, thy joyous and all-festal memory.
NOW and for ever, and to the ages of ages. Amen.
For some modern miracles of St Nicholas, visit Orthodox.net.
THE sincerity of thy deeds revealed thee to thy flock as a rule of faith, an image of meekness, and a teacher of self-control; and so through humility thou camest into possession of the things on high, and through poverty, of riches; O Father and High Priest Nicholas; intercede with Christ God that our souls may be saved.
Κανόνα πίστεως καὶ εἰκόνα πραότητος, ἐγκρατείας Διδάσκαλον, ἀνέδειξέ σε τῇ ποίμνῃ σου, ἡ τῶν πραγμάτων ἀλήθεια· διὰ τοῦτο ἐκτήσω τῇ ταπεινώσει τὰ ὑψηλά, τῇ πτωχείᾳ τὰ πλούσια, Πάτερ Ἱεράρχα Νικόλαε, πρέσβευε Χριστῷ τῷ Θεῷ, σωθῆναι τὰς ψυχὰς ἡμῶν.