Bishop Komarica spoke of the 150th anniversary of the arrival of Trappist monks from Austria, Germany and another ten countries in central and western Europe to Banja Luka and the founding of the Mariastern Abbey.
Croatian Heritage Foundation director Mijo Marić received Franjo Komarica, the bishop of the Banja Luka Roman Catholic diocese, for an official visit on the 25th of March. Also present at the meeting were Vinko Laštro, president of the Nazaret Association of Croatians of the Banja Luka Region, and Snježana Jurišić, the head of our culture department.
Director Marić expressed his gratitude to Komarica for all he has done for the general good in Bosnia-Herzegovina through numerous training, education, charity and culture projects and for his many years of dedicated work towards protecting the Croatian identity.
Bishop Komarica spoke of the many challenges his diocese faces and the efforts that are being made to secure equal rights for all citizens in the Banja Luka diocese, and the efforts being made towards securing political, material and legal assistance that would see Croatian refugees return to their homes and allow them to live there in peace. Marić noted that the efforts made by the bishop are very much valued across all segments of society and that he supports all activity aimed at achieving solutions that help Croatians in Bosnia-Herzegovina.
The bishop spoke of a major jubilee he would like celebrated in a fitting manner in June of this year—the 150th anniversary of the arrival of Trappist monks from Austria, Germany and another ten countries in central and western Europe to Banja Luka: they established the Mariastern Abbey, which contributed greatly to the development of Banja Luka and the nearby parts of Bosnia. The CHF will work to inform the general public of the significance of this anniversary, presenting the history of the abbey in Matica magazine and our online presence.
The meeting also touched on other culture programmes of interest to the Croatian component of Bosnia-Herzegovina, primarily those related to the Banja Luka diocese and the options to involve the Croatian Heritage Foundation and other partner institutions in the presentation of the wealth of cultural history of the Croatian people. The Cultural and Religious Heritage of the Croatians of Bosnia-Herzegovina event was also mentioned and the possibility of staging the event in Banja Luka.
By: Snježana Jurišić