Jump to content

The day an American GI became Saint Nicholas


Drosselmeyer

Recommended Posts

Drosselmeyer

Op-Ed: The day an American GI became Saint Nicholas

The Center Square-December 25, 2020
Op-Ed: The day an American GI became Saint Nicholas

“Sometimes celebrating a special day together can bring peace to a world at war.”

– Harry Stutz

It was the night before Christmas in the small Luxembourg town of Wiltz, as World War II paused one day. Throughout the town, not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse. But no stockings were hung by the chimney with care. Because of the war, the children had no hopes St. Nicholas would be there that Christmas.

As the children lay restlessly huddled in their beds, there were no sugarplum fairies dancing in their heads. The only thing within their heads was the continual sounds of the non-stop Nazi war machine instead. As they drifted off to sleep, they prayed for one gift on the next morrow’s Christmas Day: That Saint Nicholas would deliver peace and make all wars – forever – go far away.

Millions of battlefront children were victimized during World War II. They endured starvation, rationing, gas mask shortages, abuse and molestation while living with strangers and enemies they did not trust.

Editor's Note

In honor of Christmas day, The Center Square is republishing this piece by columnist William Haupt III. It initially appeared on Dec. 24, 2018.

Children accounted for 10 percent of the deaths during WWII. The physical and emotional impact on battlefield children robbed them of their childhood. They only remember huddling in safe places to escape the bombing, the stench of the dead in the streets and the fear of being left all alone as they ran from one shelter to another. They never knew if they’d have food the next day, and who in their family would be the next to die. Each day was a living hell and they wondered why:

“What is absurd and monstrous about war is that men who have no personal quarrel should be trained to murder one another in cold blood.”

– Aldous Huxley

Read the rest of this story here:    https://www.thedailyfodder.com/2020/12/op-ed-day-american-gi-became-saint.html?m=1&fbclid=IwAR3I-JnMv5mcoN9vslkQ_asRq-dCdtUu5YGdroGw_DNbDqdlZouEED7xxDc

 

  • Like 4
  • Love 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Similar Content

    • Michael Rielly
      By Michael Rielly
      Every New Year’s Eve at the stroke of midnight, millions around the world traditionally gather together to sing the same song, “Auld Lang Syne”. As revilers mumble though the song’s versus, it often brings many of them to tears – regardless of the fact that most don’t know or even understand the lyrics. Confusion over the song’s lyrics is almost as much of a tradition as the song itself. Of course that rarely stops anyone from joining in.
      Despite its association with New Years, “Auld Lang Syne” was never intended to be a holiday song. First published in 1787 by Scottish Poet Robert Burns, the song is about remembering friends from the past and not letting them be forgotten.
      The title, “Auld Lang Syne”, literally translates to “Old Long Since” – meaning “time gone by” or “old time’s sake”. The lyrics "We'll take a cup o' kindness yet" essentially means to raise a glass in a toast to good will, friendship, and kindness towards others. The custom of drinking to one’s health or prosperity at a special gathering dates back hundreds of years.
      Auld Lang Syne Robert Burns Original Scots Lyrics
      Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
      and never brought to mind?
      Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
      and auld lang syne?
      CHORUS:
      For auld lang syne, my jo,
      for auld lang syne,
      we’lltak' a cup o’ kindness yet,
      for auld lang syne.
      And surely ye’ll be your pint-stoup!
      and surely I’ll be mine!
      And we’ll tak' a cup o’ kindness yet,
      for auld lang syne.
      We twa hae run about the braes,
      and pou’d the gowans fine;
      But we’ve wander’d mony a weary fit,
      sin' auld lang syne.
      CHORUS
      We twa hae paidl’d in the burn,
      frae morning sun till dine;
      But seas between us braid hae roar’d
      sin' auld lang syne.
      CHORUS
      And there’s a hand, my trusty fiere!
      and gie's a hand o’ thine!
      And we’ll tak' a right gude-willie waught,
      for auld lang syne.
      CHORUS  
      Auld Lang Syne English Translation
      Should old acquaintance be forgot,
      and never brought to mind?
      Should old acquaintance be forgot,
      and old lang syne?
      CHORUS:
      For auld lang syne, my dear,
      for auld lang syne,
      we'll take a cup of kindness yet,
      for auld lang syne.
      And surely you’ll buy your pint cup!
      and surely I’ll buy mine!
      And we'll take a cup o’ kindness yet,
      for auld lang syne.
      We two have run about the slopes,
      and picked the daisies fine;
      But we’ve wandered many a weary foot,
      since auld lang syne.
      CHORUS
      We two have paddled in the stream,
      from morning sun till dine;
      But seas between us broad have roared
      since auld lang syne.
      CHORUS
      And there’s a hand my trusty friend!
      And give me a hand o’ thine!
      And we’ll take a right good-will draught,
      for auld lang syne.
      Guy Lombardo and His Royal Canadians
      Although the song was already popular in Canada and the United States by the early 19th Century, Canadian-born musician, Guy Lombardo (1912-1977) is often credited with the popularization of Auld Lang Syne.
      Lombardo first heard "Auld Lang Syne" growing up in London, Ontario, where it was often sung by Scottish immigrants. When he formed his orchestra, Guy Lombardo and His Royal Canadians, the song became one of their standards. But it wasn’t until 1929 that “Auld Lang Syne” became a New Year’s Eve tradition.
      During a live radio broadcast on New Year’s Eve at the Roosevelt Hotel in New York City, Guy Lombardo chose the song as a transition between two radio shows. The first half of their New Year’s Eve performance was broadcasted on CBS. The second half of the performance, beginning at midnight, was broadcasted on NBC. At the stroke of midnight, the orchestra played “Auld Lang Syne” as a segue from one show to the next – and a tradition was born.
      In a 1976 New York Times interview, Lombardo recalls the decision to play Auld Lang Syne at midnight:
      “We knew we were going to use ‘Auld Lang Syne’ as a theme, because Robert Burns wrote it.”
      “So we decided to use it on that New Year’s Eve program, too. It seemed appropriate, and we were familiar with ‘Auld Lang Syne’ from Canada, where we grew up. As kids, we lived in a big Scottish settlement — London, Ontario — and they always closed an evening by playing ‘Auld Lang Syne’ before the traditional ‘God Save the King.'”
      Auld Lang Syne - Guy Lombardo And His Royal Canadians (1947)
      Christmas Auld Lang Syne
      In 1960, pop singer Bobby Darin put his own spin on the classic tune. Officially titled, “Christmas Auld Lang Syne”, Darin’s version of the song was released as a single in October 1960. On December 13, 1960 Darin performed "Christmas Auld Lang Syne" on ABC’s American Bandstand. The next week, the song entered Billboard's Hot Top 100 Chart.
      Christmas Auld Lang Syne Lyrics
      When mistletoe and tinsel glow
      Paint a yuletide valentine
      Back home I go to those I know
      For a Christmas auld lang syne.
      And as we gather 'round the tree
      Our voices all combine
      In sweet accord to thank the Lord
      For a Christmas auld lang syne.
      When sleigh bells ring and choirs sing
      And the children's faces shine
      With each new toy we share their joy
      With a Christmas auld lang syne.
      We sing His praise this day of days
      And pray next year this time
      We'll all be near to share the cheer
      Of a Christmas auld lang syne.
      In sweet accord we thank the Lord
      For a Christmas auld lang syne.
      Christmas Auld Lang Syne - Bobby Darin (1960)
      Frank Capra's It's a Wonderful Life is my favorite movie of all time. And even though I have watched this film literally hundreds of times, it is the end scene that always gets me. When Harry Bailey toasts his brother George and the crowd breaks into "Auld Lang Syne", it always brings me to tears.
      What makes “Auld Lang Syne” so powerful is it has nothing to do with a new year and everything to do the importance of relationships. With its themes of friendship, reconciliation, and nostalgia, “Auld Lang Syne” reminds us that whatever changes life may bring, old friends should never be forgotten.
    • VetteCitySanta
      By VetteCitySanta
      On this day ten years ago (11/6/2010), I had the privilege of gathering with many distinguished Santa Claus portrayers in Santa Claus, IN for the Final Santa Claus Oath Ceremony. The Santa Claus Oath is a set of principles that promote brotherhood and the highest ideals for portraying Santa Claus. The oath is the brainchild of Santa portrayer and Christmas archivist, Phillip L. Wenz.
      During its signatory period, the oath garnered over 2,500 original signers from around the world. The final oath ceremony marked the end of the signatory period, and the book of signatures was placed in a plastic time capsule. The capsule is on display at Santa's Candy Castle (Santa Claus, IN) where it can be viewed by the public. The oath itself is viewable online at santaclausoath.webs.com. The Santa Claus Oath is held in high esteem by Santa groups everywhere. 

    • Drosselmeyer
      By Drosselmeyer
      9 Creepy Christmas Characters You've Never Heard Of
      By  Patti Wigington       LiveAbout.com  Urban Legends Updated January 15, 2020 The winter holidays are a season of joy and love; everyone is familiar with the jovial and generous image of Santa Claus, who cheerily fills the stockings that we've hung by our chimney with care. But Santa isn’t the only mythical being associated with the Yuletide season – in fact, there are plenty of legends and lore about characters that are slightly weird and often downright terrifying. From the claws of the Krampus to the child-eating Icelandic Christmas Cat, here are some of the creepiest holiday creatures from around the world. 
          Did You Know?
            Many European Christmas customs include scary creatures with claws and sharp teeth, who do horrible
              things to those who misbehave.
           These folkloric characters serve as malevolent contrasts to kindly Saint Nicholas.
            In many countries, these terrifying anti-Santas are used to encourage generosity and kindness.
      -----------------------------------------------------------------------
      Source:       https://www.liveabout.com/creepy-christmas-monsters-4154307
  • Donations

    All donations go directly towards the cost of hosting and running ClausNet!

    Your support, through donations or simply by clicking on sponsor links, is greatly appreciated!

    Donate Sidebar by DevFuse
  • Our picks

    • How do You Portray Santa?
      Portraying Santa is acting; it is a characterization of a mythical character.

      Most of us never think of ourselves as actors, but we are. Certain characteristics of Santa Claus have been handed down from one generation to another. The way we dress and conduct ourselves all follow an established pattern.

      Santa Claus is one of the most recognizable characters throughout the world. This came about from the advertising campaign of the Coke Cola Company and the creative painting genius, of Haddon Sundblom. Coke Cola was looking to increase winter sales of its soft drink and hired Sundblom to produce illustrations for prominent magazines. These illustrations appeared during the holiday season from the late 1930s into the early 1970s and set the standard for how Santa should look.

      This characterization of Santa with rosy cheeks, a white beard, handlebar mustache plus a red costume trimmed in white fur is the image most everyone has in their minds. Unconsciously people are going to judge you against that image. If your beard isn’t white or you have a soiled suit it will register with the onlooker.

      By the way, the majority of Sundblom's paintings depict Santa with a Brown Belt and Brown Boots. Not until his later illustrations did he change the color to Black for these items. Within the past few years many costume companies have offered the Coke Cola Suit and it has become very popular. You can tell it by the large buttons and absence of fur down the front of the jacket.

      No matter how you portray Santa, be it home visits, schools, churches, parades, corporate events, malls, hospitals we all make an entrance and an impression! The initial impression we make determines if our client will ask us to return.

      The 5 Second Rule

      I have a theory: When you enter the presence of your audience you have about 5 seconds to make people believe you are the real Santa.
        • Love
        • Like
      • 2 replies
    • If You Have the Post Christmas Blues You’re Doing Christmas Wrong
      The post-Christmas blues are a very real thing. Once the date of December 25th has passed the specter of December 26th is an ominous marker to many. It sits there on the calendar like the Ghost of Christmas Yet-to-Come. Silent and foreboding, the very image of the hooded Angel of Death it seems to be. And why not?

      Just about anywhere you look Americans are tossing trees to the curb, ripping down lights from rooftops and radio stations are flipping back to everyday music. What took months to build gets deconstructed in a matter of a couple of days.
        • Like
      • 26 replies
    • Not Everyone Can Be Santa!
      Yes, I said it and it is not meant to hurt anyone’s feelings. I do view many Facebook sites along with websites and posted photos. Frankly, many of these postings should have never been put on public display.
        • Thanks
        • Love
        • Like
      • 3 replies
    • Auld Lang Syne
      Every New Year’s Eve at the stroke of midnight, millions around the world traditionally gather together to sing the same song, “Auld Lang Syne”. As revilers mumble though the song’s versus, it often brings many of them to tears – regardless of the fact that most don’t know or even understand the lyrics. Confusion over the song’s lyrics is almost as much of a tradition as the song itself. Of course that rarely stops anyone from joining in.
        • Wow
        • Love
        • Like
      • 3 replies
    • Merry Christmas, My Friend
      Every year around this time, some variation of this poem is circulated online. The poem is generally credited to “a soldier stationed in Okinawa” or more recently since September 11, 2001, “a Marine stationed in Afghanistan”.

      However, the poem’s true author is Lance Corporal James M. Schmidt.

      Originally entitled, “Merry Christmas, My Friend”, Corporal Schmidt wrote the poem in 1986 while serving as Battalion Counter Sniper at the Marine Barracks 8th & I, in Washington, D.C.

      That day the poem was placed in the Marine Corps Gazette and distributed worldwide. Schmidt’s poem was later published in Leatherneck (Magazine of the Marines) in December 1991.
        • Sad
        • Love
        • Like
      • 1 reply
×
×
  • Create New...