St. Nicholas (disguised as a layman) giving dowries to three impoverished maidens.
The whole story:
There was a man, once rich, who had fallen on hard times. Now poor, he had three daughters of an age to be married. In those days a young woman's family had to have something of value, a dowry, to offer prospective bridegrooms. Without a dowry, a woman was unlikely to marry. This poor man's daughters, without dowries, were therefore destined to be sold into slavery, or worse. Word of the family's misfortune reached Nicholas, who had the wealth inherited from his parents. Coming in secret by night, he tossed a bag of gold into the house. What joy in the morning when the gold was discovered! The first daughter soon wed.
Not long after, another bag of gold again appeared mysteriously. The second daughter was married. The father, now very anxious to know who the secret benefactor was, kept watch during the night. A third bag of gold landed inside the house and the watchful father leaped up and caught the fleeing donor. "Ah, Nicholas, it is you!" cried the father, "You have saved my daughters from certain disaster." Nicholas, embarrassed, and not wishing to be known, begged the man to keep his identity secret. "You must thank God alone for providing these gifts in answer to your prayers for deliverance."
The frescos depicting the life of St. Nicolas (and the legends about him), in the northeast aisle arcade of the church, date from the 12th century. They are the only surviving ‘St. Nicolas cycle’ in Turkey.
Correspondent: J.M.Criel, Antwerpen.
Source: Website of ‘stnicholascenter.org’ .