Santa doesn’t look a day over 17 centuries

The origin of Santa Claus begins in the 4th century with Saint Nicholas, Bishop of Myra, an area in present-day Turkey. By all accounts St. Nicholas was a generous man, particularly devoted to children. After his death around 340 A.D. he was buried in Myra, but in 1087 Italian sailors purportedly stole his remains and removed them to Bari, Italy, greatly increasing St. Nicholas’ popularity throughout Europe. His kindness and reputation for generosity gave rise to claims he that he could perform miracles and devotion to him increased. St. Nicholas became the patron saint of Russia, where he was known by his red cape, flowing white beard, and bishop’s mitre. In Greece, he is the patron saint of sailors; in France he was the patron of lawyers; and in Belgium the patron of children and travelers. Thousands of churches across Europe were dedicated to him and sometime around the 12th century an official church holiday was created in his honor. The Feast of St. Nicholas was celebrated December 6 and the day was marked by gift-giving and charity. After the Reformation, European followers of St. Nicholas dwindled, but the legend was kept alive in Holland where the Dutch spelling of his name Sint Nikolaas was eventually transformed to Sinterklaas. Dutch children would leave their wooden shoes by the fireplace, and Sinterklaas would reward good children by placing treats in their shoes. Dutch colonists brought brought this tradition with them to America in the 17th century and here the Anglican name of Santa Claus emerged. (allthingschristmas.com)

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2014 will mark the library’s 50th year in operation. From a tiny, white, one-room building to a spacious, award-winning building in 2013, the library has grown with the community. Inside the library has progressed forward to provide more current reading materials; wireless internet service; ebooks; fax service; and community programs such as a monthly Movie Day. T.L.L. Temple Memorial Library has always been and will always be here for you, the community of Diboll. Celebrate with us at our Open House on Friday, Dec. 6 from 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. as we begin our 50th anniversary celebration. Join us for refreshments and tell us your story about the library.

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Be a blessing in your community today! Several churches in Diboll are collecting toys for the underprivileged children in our town for Christmas. Operation Christmas Blessings is a good cause, and the library is helping out by being a drop off location for your donations. It’s quick and easy. Just buy a toy; then bring it to the library and drop it in the box marked Christmas Blessings. There is no greater gift that you can receive than the wonderful feeling that you get when you give to someone in need.

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On Dec. 6 at 6 p.m., we will be showing a Christmas movie for the kids, and you can have your picture made with Santa. There will be one free bag of popcorn per guest and lemonade. Feel free to bring any snacks or drinks that you want to eat. Pictures with Santa will be a $4 charge; however, you are welcome to bring a camera and take your own photos. For more information call us at 936-829-5497.

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It’s the most wonderful time of the year! Join us for a celebration of Christmas good will and cheer at Adult Game Night on Saturday, Dec. 7, from 6 to 9 p.m. Bring your favorite game to play or play ours while you enjoy a homemade bowl of chili with all the fixings. For more information, call 936-829-5497.

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Hey young adults! You’re invited to the library’s Ugly Sweater Party for the sixth grade through college age group. The festivities will begin on Dec. 20 from 6 to 10 p.m. You must wear the ugliest Christmas sweater that you can find or make because there will be a contest for the ugliest sweater. Join us for fun, games, and food.

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Family Movie Day at the library is Friday, Dec. 27, at 6 p.m. Popcorn and lemonade will be available. We encourage you to bring your own snacks and drinks to add to your fun. You may also bring pillows and blankets and sit on the floor to watch the movie. Come bring the family and join in the fun! Our movie license will not allow us to publicize the movie title so please call us for more information at 936-829-5497. Children under 12 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian.

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New Adult Books:

“The Great Escape,” by Susan Elizabeth Phillips – Lucy Jorik is a champ at never embarrassing the family she adores – not surprising since her mother is one of the most famous women in the world. But now Lucy has done just that. And on her wedding day, no less, to the most perfect man she’s ever known. Instead of saying “I do” to Mr. Irresistible, Lucy flees the church in an ill-fitting blue choir robe and hitches a ride on the back of a beat-up motorcycle plastered with offensive bumper stickers. She’s flying into the unknown with a rough-looking, bad-tempered stranger who couldn’t be more foreign to her privileged existence. While the world searches for her, Lucy must search for herself, and she quickly realizes that her customary good manners are no defense against a man who’s raised rudeness to an art form. Lucy needs to toughen up – and fast.

“Double Blind,” by Brandilyn Collins – Twenty-nine-year-old Lisa Newberry can barely make it through the day. Suddenly widowed and the survivor of a near-fatal attack, she is wracked with grief and despair. Then she hears of a medical trial for a tiny brain chip that emits electrical pulses to heal severe depression. At rope’s end Lisa offers herself as a candidate. When she receives her letter of acceptance for the trial, Lisa is at first hopeful. But…brain surgery. Can she really go through with that? What if she receives only the placebo? What if something far worse goes wrong?

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Library closing: The library will be closed on Nov. 28-30 for the Thanksgiving Holiday.

Fall library hours: Monday, 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Tuesday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.; and Saturday, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Have a great week!