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21 February 2020

International Mother Language Day / Friar Blago Brkic Birth Centenary

Bosnia and Herzegovina (Croat Administration): International Mother Language Day / Friar Blago Brkic Birth Centenary, 21 February 2020. Images from WOPA+ Stamps and Coins.

Technical details
Issue Date: 21.02.2020
Designer: Petar Soldo
Printer: AKD d.o.o. Zagreb
Size: 25.56 x 35.50 mm
Values: 0.50 BAM

Friar Blago Brkić was born 01 March 1920 (Njive, parish Rasno), and died 26 August 2009 (Široki Brijeg). His parents Ivan and Iva nee Škrobo named him Jozo at his christening. He finished elementary school in Rasno and in Široki Brijeg (1927 – 1931). He finished secondary school-gymnasiumin the Franciscan Classical Gymnasium in Široki Brijeg (1931 – 1940), and completed his theology studies in Humac, Mostar and Zagreb. On 11 July 1937 he put on his religious habit in Humac and took the religious name friar Blago. He made his solemn vow on 12 July 1941. He was ordained a priest in Mostar on 22 August 1943. In Herzegovina, he was chaplain in Drinovci, Čerin and Tomislavgrad, and then a parson in Rakitno, a vicar in Široki Brijeg, and twice a parson in Ružići, as well as in Grude. In 1968, on the verge of fifty, he became a missionary in Africa and stayed for 25 years. During this entire time, he was active in the Kayeye mission in Zaire. In 1993, he returned to Herzegovina due to an illness, and stayed in Široki Brijeg until his death in 2009.

He translated the Bible into the Kiluba language, as well as catechisms and liturgical books with the help of other Franciscan missionaries from Herzegovina. He wrote and published the following books: A Conversation with God,thoughts to daily mass readings(cro. Razgovor s Bogom, misli uz svagdanja misna čitanja) (2002) and From Herzegovina to Congo(cro. Od Hercegovine do Konga) (2003). Friar Blago is a prime example of a persistent and diligent man, monk and priest. His body is resting in Široki Brijeg on the Mekovac cemetery.

(Friar Ante Marić)

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