(Celebration of Serbia’s favourite Patriarch’s Gospel life)
The Days of Patriarch Pavle is a celebration that takes place in Čačak, with fringe events in Kućanci (Croatia), Gacko (Republic of Srpska), Nikćić (Montenegro) and Prizren, representing a cultural and spiritual gathering aiming to preserve the memory and heritage of the Gospel deeds of the man who followed the road of Christ two millennia after the Saviour’s earthly days.
Prior to taking the monastic vows on the Feast of Annunciation in 1948 at the Monastery of Annunciation in Ovčar Banja near Čačak, Gojko Stojčević had been an educated novice in the monasteries of Vujan and the Holy Trinity near Čačak. It was at the Vujan monastery, wile overwhelmed by a fatal illness, that he was praying to God for the miracle of recovery and carved a wooden cross, which is still kept at the monastery as the Vujan Corss of Patriarch Pavle.
Inspired by the Vujan Cross and his Gospel life, his deeds as the monk, bishop and patriarch, we have set up a wood-carving colony ‘Patriarch Pavle’s Cross’, which led to the establishment of the festival. The purpose of the wood-carving colony is for wood carvers to contribute hand-made crosses, inspired by the cross carved by Patriarch Pavle in celebration of the glory of God. With every day of his earthly life, Patriarch Pavle was bringing us closer to the Gospels and the life in accordance with the teaching of Jesus Christ. Honouring his memory and as a token of our gratitude, we gather on the day of The Exaltation of the Holy Cross (27 th September), to contribute crosses carved in the current and the previous years. All of the crosses are treasured in Čačak, the hub of the festival, to be shown on occasions around the globe, to believers who are willing to commemorate the deeds of Patriarch Pavle as an example of an earthly life led in accordance with the teaching of our Lord.
Other events taking place during the festivity which begins on 11 th September 11 and ends on 15 th November, with a ceremonial opening on 27 th September at the Monastery of Annunciation, range from concerts of spiritual and Liturgical songs performed by choirs, to sermons on his life, deeds, and preaching, to exhibitions, art and literary works and other.
The Days of Patriarch Pavle festival in Čačak will be recorded in the magazine of the manifestation, to include all the content that could not be shown at the ceremonies in the days from 11 th September to 15 th November.
Bearing in mind the fact that we have witnessed his humble life, acting at every opportunity and in every place, and constantly pointing out that "We must be humans", we want to preserve all the messages and lessons for the whole world, for ourselves and others to keep improving and perfecting ourselves.
With the love he showed for every man, leading by example and showing how to treat everyone, he lived his earthly life according to the message of the Father and the Son, attaining the gospel deeds for us to look upon, securing a place for himself in the everlasting realm of eternal life.
With this gathering, we are reminded of the fundamental values of human life, which Gojko Stojčević showed us every day with his actions dedicated to God, as the monk, bishop and Patriarch Pavle.
To his honor and glory, through all of us joined in faith and all the others joined in faith, to be able to understand his deeds and the meaning of his words "we must be human", both today and in all ages.