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22 August 2016
Apostle Matthias, Afterfeast of the Transfiguration
On Monday evening 8 August 2016, I received at the Diocesan See, Protection of the Most Holy Mother of God Monastery “New Gracanica,” a group of present and former members from the organization now known as the Serbian American Museum “St. Sava,” which for most of its history was known as the Serbian Cultural Club “St. Sava,” founded by the well-known Serbian intellectual +Dr. Slobodan Draskovic, whose movement had as its foundation the teachings of the Father of our Serbian Church and Nation, St. Sava. This group of present and former members presented an eloquent letter/appeal requesting that our Serbian Orthodox Diocese become involved in the situation which is presently unfolding in the organization, regarding the potential sale of the building located at 448 W. Barry in Chicago and the future of the organization.
Being moved by the letter/appeal and by the heartfelt words of the group, I proceeded to meet on Wednesday 10 August with the President of the organization, Dr. Zivojin Pavlovic, at Holy Resurrection Cathedral in Chicago, in the presence of V. Rev. Darko Spasojevic (Cathedral Dean), Desko Nikitovic (the former Consul General of the Republic of Serbia, Chicago-Belgrade Sister Cities Committee Co- Chair and organization member) and Ljubisa Milicic (Chicago-Belgrade Sister Cities Committee Co- Chair). At this meeting, a path forward was agreed to by Dr. Pavlovic, whereby many of the concerns presented to me by the group would be overcome, namely that the sale of the property would be placed with a highly-regarded commercial real estate brokerage which has no pre-existing fiduciary relationship to the organization and that our Serbian Orthodox Diocese, along with prominent leaders of the Serbian American community, would become direct legal decision-makers in how best to use the proceeds of the sale, since the Barry building is a historic legacy of the entire Serbian Orthodox community, not just the present localized membership of this once-prominent, world-wide Serb diaspora organization.
Unfortunately, I have learned from the group that Dr. Pavlovic thus far has not honored the 10 August agreement and that, therefore, the group has been left with no choice but to retain a lawyer. Today, I received a copy of the letter from their lawyer to Dr. Pavlovic and the present board of the organization. I am truly saddened by the fact that our Serbian Orthodox community, once again, is on the brink of a legal dispute. I call upon all involved to avoid litigation and specifically call upon Dr. Pavlovic to honor the agreement that was reached on 10 August.
Your intercessor before our Transfigured Lord,
Bishop of New Gracanica and Midwestern America Diocese
A Celebration in Honor of His Grace Bishop Dr. MITROPHAN on His 25 Years of Service in the Eastern American Diocese and His Election as Bishop of Canada
Saturday, August 13, 2016
St. Elijah Serbian Orthodox Church Aliquippa, PA
Hierarchical Divine Liturgy, 10 AM
Reception & Testimonial Banquet to follow at the St. Elijah Serbian Center
This year marks His Grace Bishop Dr. MITROPHAN’s 25th Anniversary as Serbian Orthodox Bishop of Eastern America. It also marks a new milestone as he leaves the Eastern American Diocese for his new duties as Bishop of Canada. The clergy and faithful of the Eastern American Diocese are invited to thank His Grace for his years of faithful service as our Archpastor, and to wish him Godspeed as he assumes his new duties in Canada at this service and banquet in his honor. Complete details will be forthcoming. Meanwhile, save the date and plan to join us for this historic event.
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From Fr. Dean Botsis of the Orthodox Christian Clergy Association of Greater Chicago Area
Next Sunday, January 18, the Chicago March for Life will take place, beginning at the Federal Plaza in Chicago. We would certainly like to show an Orthodox Christian presence at this March! At this point, His Grace Bishop Paul (OCA-Chicago) and His Grace Bishop Anthony (Antiochian-Toledo) are expected to participate. Any Orthodox Christians who can “March for Life” are asked to meet at the Federal Plaza, under the Orthodox Christian for Life banner!
Our annual Sanctity of Life Service will take place on the following Sunday, January 25, at the St. Haralambos Greek Orthodox Church in Niles, Illinois, at 6:00 pm. Following this prayer service, there will be a presentation by Mr. George Petmezas called, “Faith and Perseverance on a Life-changing Journey.”