By Christina Hermoso
Roman Catholics mark on Tuesday, September 10, the Feast of Saint Nicholas (San Nicolas) of Tolentino, a well-loved and widely venerated saint of the Roman Catholic Church.
Feast masses and special prayer services will be held in the Dioceses of Cabanatuan, Mati, and Tandag; as well as in Cabatuan, Iloilo; Anda, Pangasinan; and at the University of Negros Occidental, Recoletos, Bacolod City in honor of its patron.
In Candaba, Pampanga, a fiesta mass and a solemn procession bearing his miraculous image with a bird on a platter on his hand will be held. It will be followed by the traditional sharing of San Nicolas cookies.
In Carranglan, Nueva Ecija, the “Tinapay” Festival will be held which will be highlighted by a holy mass at the San Nicolas de Tolentino Parish and the giving away of bread as an expression of gratitude for the many blessings.
Named after Saint Nicholas of Myra (more popularly known as Santa Claus), whose intercession was invoked by his parents to have a child, St. Nicholas was a popular Augustinian friar, confessor, and preacher in Italy. He ministered to the poor and the prisoners and was known as a mystic and a wonder worker.
Born in 1245, he died in 1305 and was canonized by Pope Eugene IV in 1446. His remains are venerated by hundreds of pilgrims every year at the Basilica of St. Nicholas in Tolentino, Italy.
St. Nicholas is venerated the world over as the patron of holy souls.