Varroville, New South Wales, Australia, January 29, 2021
The Serbian Orthodox St. Sava College in Varroville, New South Wales, Australia, officially opened on Wednesday with the celebration of the Divine Liturgy and an opening ceremony.
“Thanking to God, with the support of the entire Serbian community united around the project of vital importance for its spiritual and national being in Australia and New Zealand, the Saint Sava College was opened on January 27, 2021, on the feast day of Saint Sava, the first Serbian Archbishop and Enlightener,” reports the Serbian Orthodox Metropolitanate of Australia and New Zealand.
The opening is the culmination of several decades of hard work by the Serbian community in Australia. The school describes its mission as, “preparing our students for success in all areas of human endeavour, be it intellectual, spiritual, emotional, physical or social, in a rapidly changing world.”
The day began with the celebration of the Divine Liturgy by His Grace Bishop Siluan of Australia and New Zealand and several local clerics followed by a prayer for teachers and students at the beginning of the school year. The rite of the blessing of the slava bread was also served.
“We in Australia are especially happy today because we are blessed to serve the Divine Liturgy in the church of our college, our first Serbian school on the fifth continent, dedicated to the greatest educator and teacher of our kind… In the peace, joy and love of Christ … we thank God for this school, where our children will cherish their faith,” His Grace emphasized at the Liturgy.
The official opening ceremony was held in the afternoon, attended by the political leadership of New South Wales, Bishop Emilian of the Greek Archdiocese and other clergy, representatives of the Serbian and Bosnian-Herzegovinian embassies, and the benefactors, parents, and first students of the school.
Bp. Siluan then addressed those present, saying: “The completion of St. Sava’s College, its opening today on the feast day of St. Sava, our patron saint of education, can be interpreted as an act of Divine providence, as a great blessing and joy, a dream that has become a reality.”
A number of other speeches followed, after which Gladys Berejiklian, the Premier of New South Wales, cut the ribbon and officially opened St. Sava College.