On December 6th, our liturgical calendar remembered St. Nicholas. He was born in Asia Minor (the area was Greek and today is the southern coast of Turkey). From a Dutch tradition with ‘Sinterklaas’ the secular world knows him as Santa Claus. Regardless of how you know him, his reputation includes generosity, care for those in need and love for children.
Today, we could describe Nicholas as a next generation inheritor. His parents died when he was young during an epidemic and their wealth passed to him. Obviously, even with a young person, his parents had also passed on their values to him so that he would be prepared to receive this wealth and do good with it. He was a third century philanthropist using his inheritance to address social issues in his time and community — illness, poverty and suffering. Like the modern-day Santa Claus who is known for giving in extraordinary, even miraculous ways, Nicholas’ generosity was noticeably exceptional and made an impact on people’s lives and his community.
During this season of giving let us remember St. Nicholas and his parents and consider not just what we give today but also how we pass on values to the next generation by modeling and engaging them in generosity and strategic philanthropy. The Catholic Foundation of Central Florida has resources to help you pass on your values. A great start is to work together as a family to create a Family Mission Statement.
Please be aware our offices will be closed the week of December 25 – 29 for our team to spend time with their families. However, we know this is a busy time for charitable giving and our leadership team will be checking calls and emails to ensure that we can help you meet deadlines for your year-end giving. Thank you for your stewardship of our Church in Central Florida. We look forward to helping you achieve your philanthropic aspirations in the new year. Until then, our team wishes you the peace that only Christ brings.
Kimberlee Riley CAP® President & CEO