A great man is one who collects knowledge the way a bee collects honey and uses it to help people overcome the difficulties they endure - hunger, ignorance and disease!
- Nikola Tesla

Remember, remember always, that all of us, and you and I especially, are descended from immigrants and revolutionists.
- Franklin Roosevelt

While their territory has been devastated and their homes despoiled, the spirit of the Serbian people has not been broken.
- Woodrow Wilson

First Editor's Letter

Dear Readers,

All of mankind living on planet Earth generates superhuman efforts to solve the ancient question of identity as unity in diversity. Although this problem received answers throughout history, in more or less satisfactory forms, it appears that our time, especially from the time of the French Revolution, wrestles with it in its sharpest form. At the beginning of the 21st century, the relationship of the Serbian Homeland with its Diaspora in the West in a great way reflects this problem, within the framework of a broader relationship of Serbian people with the West.

It is certain that life, place and role of a nation depend upon solving the quintessential question of identity, unity and diversity within the broader family of one world, which has become one big neighborhood. When we speak of Serbian people, I think that it is important to come to a human and civilized consensus within the boundaries of our nation without which it would be difficult to have a normal relationship with and an understanding of others and those different from us. We are witnesses, unfortunately, that instead of spiritual-social and civilized functioning wisdom, today we have clearly political and economic interests which have pushed out the above mentioned wisdom and skills with the thirst for "informative contents", meaning that the utilitarian principle wins over our ability to live together. Therefore we are witnesses of the end of culture (western and oriental) as a whole ethos and an integral system of knowledge, belief and behavior. The future, or actually current, international community becomes a community of national interest groups, rather than a union of countries. Sometimes we are under the impression that the Serbian State and the Serbian national territory become more and more diaspora themselves. It appears as if we, walking toward modern currents, are confronted with a dilemma, to give vain, often just illusory, and anachronistic resistance, or bravely, with well thought out actions, but foresightfully wrestle with historic, or so called cosmogonial challenges.

Within the framework of the theme of the Role of the Serbian Orthodox Church in Preserving the Diaspora's Identity, I present to your attention the motion of facing the challenge of "unity in diversity" on the North American continent. This project we named Serbica Americana.

Serbica Americana is the center for research, documentation and information of authentic Serbian academic-scientific, theological-church and cultural-art accomplishments in North America.

The work of the center has the following scope, field and focus:

  • Collection of theological material and historical documentation (books, periodicals, newspapers, ethnographic material, life stories...)
  • Printing into the English language works of the most important theological writers of the 20th century: Fr. Sebastian Dabovic, Bishop Nikolaj Velimirovic, Fr. Justin Popovic, Bishop Danilo Krstic, Bishop Amphilohije Radovic, Atanasije Jevtic, Patriarch Pavle, as well as younger Serbian thinkers and theologians
  • Organizing expert meetings, public speaker platforms, popular lectures, visitation by scientists, publicists, writers etc., with theological, cultural, historical and other themes
  • Formulating clear and long-term goals of serbian diaspora
  • Printing of a periodical (for instance, a quarterly paper) in which will be published short reports about theological research, interesting segments of the material, etc., as well as announcement of future work
  • Organizing supplemental classes and different courses about national and spiritual culture for young people of all ages at diocesan centers (in collaboration with similar institutions)
  • Organizing study visitations of young theologians who could, beside their personal professional work, assemble and organize scientists with similar interests from their field
  • Maintaining constant collaboration with other theology schools in the Homeland and Diaspora, with the coordination of joint activities
  • Formation of a compact nucleus of well-known leaders with a clear vision and dedication
  • Coordination of professional and cultural work in other organizations who are interested in the preservation of spiritual and national inheritance (church, national press, national associations)
  • Including (through material and logistical support) young theologians from the Homeland and Diaspora in theologically directed research
  • Copying and distributing certain cultural and historical values (material, tape and long-play recordings, rare books, etc.)
  • Establishing departments for library work and collection of material in cities with a larger population of Serbs
  • Creation of continent-wide web "representatives" to collect data about local communities in various areas of the USA and Canada, as well as to record important informers (priests, politicians, cultural workers) who possess certain material or could write memoirs or similar writings
  • Preparation of material for presentation in the Homeland and Diaspora to inform the Homeland of theological achievements, needs and projects
  • Coordination of work departments for Slavic, Byzantine, Balkan and similar departments in universities in the USA and Canada (standardization and supplementation of existing curriculum and programs with suggestions and sponsoring of new postgraduate courses)
  • Scholarship awards for Serbian students and stimulus for doctorate dissertations (generally: scientific training of Serbian theology in America)
  • Media (propaganda in general) presentation about the importance of the mission of Serbian theology on the North American continent. First laborers: Sebastian Dabovic and Nikolaj Velimirovic
  • Writing the history of the Serbian Church in the USA; creation, life and formation of the Serbian Church in the USA, parishes and monasteries (schematizm)
  • Serbian military, political and science history in America
  • Scholarship awards for researchers within the framework of Serbica Americana
  • Consulting in the sense of realization of Serbian goals

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Second Editor's Letter

Dear Readers,

The world of Serbica Americana is a captivating place — the more you know about it, the more interesting it gets. Never has it been so vital to understand how issues in the Old or New Country impact our lives and business. (...and never has information and dialogue about both Old and New been so easily accessible.)

As you already know, only Serbica Americana links the events around the world and brings you all you need to know, plus other stories which are just too good to miss -- thus aspiring to contribute to this dialogue.

Serbian interest in the history of the Diaspora, the search for its puzzles and the will of God in it, reveals a faith in the future, in God’s providential presence and labor throughout history.

The life of the Serbian community in the USA unfolds on the field of dramatic history which is interwoven with God’s providence. A great number of Serbs who find themselves for longer or shorter periods of time spread out throughout the world – often departing after difficult deliberation – remain connected to the land of their birth or ancestry, living a 'double consciousness'...

Departing into the Diaspora could be compared to leaving to a “monastery,” as a type of alienation followed by deprivation, fasting, prayer… (forms of a struggle or podvig that balances a person's aspirations against his inclinations.) It appears that the lone institution which can today sustain the continuation and connection of Serbs throughout the world is the Serbian Orthodox Church, more than anything else because of the quality which we call togetherness ("sabornost"). This in itself brings an enormous responsibility. It is our deepest conviction that the Church plays this uniting role among the Serbian people thanks to her eschatological dimension and ability to accept history on account of her children.

You are invited to once again join the many curious readers of Serbica Americana around the world who rely on the in-depth analysis and insightful commentary that only Serbica Americana delivers.

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About Serbica Americana

Published by:
Serbica Americana
in collaboration with:
Serbian Western American Diocese, Los Angeles, California

Edited by:
Bishop Maxim (Vasiljevic)

Contributors:
Nenad Vukicevic, Dragana Masic, Milina Jovanovic, Vladimir Acimovic, Fr Bratislav Krsic

Serbica Americana Foundation:
Nenad Djordjevic, Ronald Radakovich, Nenad Vukicevic

Web site:
Vladimir Acimovic

Graphic design:
Denis Vikic

© 2012-2017 All Rights Reserved

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People Directory

Edward W. Ryan

Др Едвард В. Рајан – лекар спасилац Београда

Увод

Подвизи и легендарна достигнућа америчког лекара и хирурга пуковника др Едварда Рајана, шефа мисије америчког Црвеног крста (American Red Cross) у Србији током Првог светског рата, готово да су остали непознати и заборављени.

Његов чудесни живот представља грађу за узбудљив авантуристички роман или за сценарио каквог холивудског спектакла. „Рајан је био дивљи борбени Ирац који је без прекида скакао у ватру... Апсолутно неустрашив, коцкајући се смрћу, урадио је велики посао високо држећи у руци блиставу бакљу америчког доброчинства“, записао је у својим мемоарима Џон Гејд, први амбасадор САД у балтичким земљама, сликајући његов портрет.

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Publishing

Knowing the Purpose of Creation through the Resurrection

Proceedings of the Symposium on St. Maximus the Confessor

The present volume is a collection of presentations delivered at the St Maximus the Confessor International Symposium held in Belgrade at the University of Belgrade from 18 to 21 October 2012. The Belgrade Symposium brought together the following speakers: Demetrios Bathrellos, Grigory Benevitch, Calinic Berger, Paul Blowers, David Bradshaw, Adam Cooper, Brian Daley, Paul Gavrilyuk, Atanasije Jevtić, Joshua Lollar, Andrew Louth, John Panteleimon Manoussakis, Maximos of Simonopetra, Ignatije Midić, Pascal Mueller-Jourdan, Alexei Nesteruk, Aristotle Papanikolaou, George Parsenios, Philipp Gabriel Renczes, Nino Sakvarelidze, Torstein Tollefsen, George Varvatsoulias, Maxim Vasiljević, Christos Yannaras, and John Zizioulas. The papers and discussions in this volume of the proceedings of the Belgrade Symposium amply attest to the reputation of Saint Maximus the Confessor as the most universal spirit of the seventh century, and perhaps the greatest thinker of the Church. Twenty eight studies have been gathered in the present volume, which is organized into eight chapters, each of them corresponding to the proceedings of the Symposium, all of which are of intense interest and importance. Chapter One brings to light new evidence regarding the sources, influences, and appropriations of St Maximus’ teaching. His mediatorial role as one of the few genuinely ecumenical theologians of the patristic era is acknowledged and affirmed. Chapter Two offers some crucial clarifications on the relationship between person, nature, and freedom. In Chapter Three we find substantial discussion on body, pathos, love, eros, etc. New interpretive paradigms and insights are proposed in Chapter Four, while the next chapter presents the Confessor’s cosmological perspective in light of modern scientific discoveries. Some important ontological and ecclesiological issues are discussed in Chapter Six, while in Chapter Seven we are able to see what contemporary synthesis is possible through St Maximus’ thought. Chapter Eight offers further readings by engaging younger scholars who did not present their papers at the conference but whose studies were accepted by the organizers. In the final paper we find an important overview of the Symposium with a description of the conference’s flow. In an age of plurality and division, it is particularly important to know what our Tradition—shaped by the Fathers—can teach us. In any such endeavor, Saint Maximus the Confessor stands out as the most important theologian of the so-called Byzantine period. Yet his theology, assimilated and incorporated by Tradition, has relevance beyond any single historical period; in fact, the Confessor’s efforts to mediate between East and West distinguish his work as vital for contemporary theological discourse.