St. Nicholas Day and Meaty Theology*
"And this is the feast day of St. Nicholas, who, on a mission caring for the hungry during a terrible famine, discovered that a nasty butcher had murdered and slaughtered three theological students who had asked him for hospitality
(after the butcher had said to them, truthfully but ironically, "I'd like to have you for dinner").
The cherry-nosed saint exposed the butcher and his wife--who had disposed of the three guests by baking them into meat pies--and resurrected the terribly thankful clerks from their doughy coffins.
Jolly Old St. Nicholas was reported to have left coal (considered inedible even in the quaint mythical country in which these tales always take place) in the stockings of the still-hungry butcher and his wife. Ever since then, small meat pies in the shape of theological students are found in the shoes of children and eaten in the saint's honor during the first week of Advent. Especially, for some reason, in this specific part of Germany (it is said that there is only one true vegetarian in the entire region, and even then, it is rumored that this vegetarian theologian doesn't realize that there is fish in the dressing of Caesar Salads).
Yet, despite the passage of more than seventeen centuries (not to mention the formulation of the Nicene Creed), famine endures.
And bloody butchers, their wives, and all who are sick and tired of theology and hungry to eat truth lament their loss.
Be well, do good work, and . . . O Come, O Come Emmanuel."
*Alas Ben Camino is suffering from a serious case of Adventitis tendinitis in his rotator cuff. But fear not, oh ye, fearful of . . . being baked into meat pies. Most days, he plans to post something to disrupt your pine scented Advent even if it's not entirely new. This meaty meditation was first posted on Saint Nicholas Day in 2012, back when Garrison Keillor references made sense. It was part therefore of the original run of Ironic Advent Meditations (ooooh aaaaah). Those were never added to the blog, but instead were simply written and posted on Zuckerbook day by day for friends. Thanks to some excavation work, now you have it, whether you want it or not. You can find three other St. Nicholas Day meditations on the blog: St. Nicholas Punch and St. Nicholas: Heresy Hunter. They, too, are rather tasty.