Basil was born in Popovo Selo in Herzegovina, of simple and devout parents. From his youth he was filled with love for the Church of God, and when he grew up he went to the monastery of the Dormi-tion of the Mother of God at Trebinje, and became a monk. As such, he quickly became known for his serious and rare ascetic life, for he loaded himself with ascetic practices, each harder than the last. He was later chosen and consecrated as Bishop of Zahum and Skenderia, much against his will.
As a bishop, he first lived in the monastery at Tvrdo"s, whence, as a good pastor, he confirmed his flock in the Orthodox faith, keeping it from the cruelty of the Turks and the guile of the Latins. But when he was too pressed-upon by his enemies, and when Tvrdos* was destroyed by the Turks, Basil moved to Ostrog, where he lived in strict asceticism, protecting his flock by his unceasing and loving prayers. He went peacefully to the Lord in the 16th century, leaving his whole and healing body, uncor-rupt and wonderworking, to the present day.
On Sunday, May 4th, 2014, with the Hierarchical Divine Liturgy, the parish in San Diego celebrated the Sunday of the Myrrh-bearing Women and their Church Slava – Parish Patronal Feast Day of St. George the Great Martyr. Though the Feast Day of St. George falls on Tuesday, May 6th, the parish according to established practice celebrates their Church Slava on the Sunday closest to the actual Feast Day.
His Grace Bishop Maxim served the Hierarchical Divine Liturgy with concelebrants: protopresbyter-stavrophor Velimir Petakovic, protopresbyter-stavrophor Bozidar Draskovic, both former parish priests, protopresbyter Bratislav Bratso Krsic, the parish priest, Deacon Paul Germain, parish deacon, in the presence of many parishioners and the faithful from other Orthodox parishes of the San Diego area. Protopresbyter-stavrophor Milan Vukovic, parish priest at the neighboring parish of St. Petka in San Marcos, joined in the celebration later during the banquet and program.
His Holiness Irinej, Serbian Patriarch, received a delegation of Orthodox Spaniards from the Diocese of Western Europe of the Serbian Orthodox Church, led by protopresbyter-stavrophor Joan García at the Serbian Patriarchate in Belgrade on 7 May 2014.
The dean of the Academy of the Serbian Orthodox Church for Fine Arts and Conservation protopresbyter-stavrophor Dr. Radomir Popovic was also present as a co-organizer of this visit.
His Holiness Irinej, Serbian Patriarch, received Mr. Konstantine Kosachev, director of the Federal Agency for the Commonwealth of Independent States, compatriots who live abroad and international cooperation (Rossotrudnichestvo), and Mr. Valery Ryazansky, president of the Committee of the Council of the Federation for social politics at the Serbian Patriarchate on 5 May 2014.
The same day, Serbian Patriarch Irinej received Monsignor Orlando Antonini, Apostolic Nuncio in Belgrade with associates. His Grace Bishop Andrej of Remesiana was present at the audiences.
Upon the invitation of His Grace Bishop Milutin of Valjevo, on the feast-day of Saint Bishop Nikolaj (Velimirovic), President of Serbia Mr. Tomislav Nikolic participated in the Liturgy at the Lelic monastery and later on visited the nearby monastery of Celije.
That was the first visit of the current Serbian President Tomislav Nikolic to the Diocese of Valjevo. At the Liturgy he read the Creed and Lord’s prayer, received Holy Communion and attended the cutting of slava cake at the Lelic monastery, in honour of the feast-day of St. Nikolaj of Serbia. Their Graces Bishops Milutin of Valjevo and Atanasije of Bihac-Petrovac officiated the Divine Liturgy.
Fifteen years after NATO bombings and many ensuing conflicts in Kosovo, poverty and isolation continue to be a challenge for the thousands of families returning to their homes in the region's non-majority communities.
IOCC has maintained a humanitarian presence in the region since 1998, and is continuing its work through ongoing initiatives to help these vulnerable families improve their farming techniques, raise their household incomes, and improve the learning environment for their children.