Vukasin of Klepci

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Little is known about Saint Vukašin of Klepci (in serbian: Свети Вукашин из Клепаца), the Serb and Orthodox Christian from Herzegovina. Nevertheless, what we know today about him is the essence of the following event. He was born in the village of Klepci, in Herzegovina, at the end of the last or at the beginning of this century. At the beginning of World War II, the Croatian fascists Ustašas, arrested him and transported him, together with other Serbs of that region, into the notorious concentration camp of Jasenovac (estimated number of victims goes to 700 000 and more). After horrible days full of torturing, he was brought in front of an Ustashe`s soldier who was supposed to execute him, but who said he would spare his (Vukašin's) life if Vukasin cried loudly: "Long live Ante Pavelic!". Ante Pavelic was the leader of Ustashe. Vukašin who saw a knife in the hands of the soldier, replied calmly: "My child, you do what you must", and refused to obey soldier`s request. The soldier of Ustashe swayed his knife, cut off Vukašin`s ear and repeated his request. Vukašin repeated his answer. The soldier then cut off Vukašin's other ear, then nose, then scarred Vukašin`s face. The next body part was tongue. After repeating the request to Vukasin to utter the vicious words and hail the Head of Ustaše (Ante Pavelic), Vukasin once again calmly replied: "My child, you do what you must". Distracted soldier eventually killed him, and afterwards went mad. At the regular session of the Holy Assembly of Bishops of the Serbian Orthodox Church in 1998, Vukašin from the Klepci village was entered into the List of Names of the Serbian Orthodox Church as the Martyr. His feast day is May 16 (Julian Calendar).

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