Their Royal Highnesses Crown Prince Alexander and Crown Princess Katherine celebrated today the Patron Saint Day of the Royal Family – St. Andrew the First-Called, at the Royal Palace in Belgrade.
In the morning His Holiness Serbian Patriarch Irinej officiated the Liturgy at the Royal Chapel of St. Andrew the First-Called together with His Grace Bishop Jovan of Sumadija and the clergy of Belgrade-Karlovac diocese.
After the Liturgy the act of cutting the Slava cake was performed in the Blue room of the Royal Palace, which was conducted by His Holiness Serbian Patriarch Irinej.
His Royal Highness Crown Prince Alexander addressed the distinguished guests and friends present at the Slava lunch: “Difficult times, dear friends, for us Serbs are nothing new! We are born in torment, we live in trouble, struggling with adversities and wage war without end. And we are winning. The proof of this is the fact that we are still here. Since time immemorial to Saint Sava, from Saint Sava to Karadjordje, from Karadjordje to us, from us to eternity and as long as the God recognizes us as his people! Hard times are today, too, but our road leads through hardship. Our road is straight and right and on that road our Patron Saint is the lighthouse and direction. And those who, by the fate of history, quit their patron saints, remember them, their “Slava” name, and they know who they are and who they follow on their road. We are God’s people, knights of our Patron Saints, a nation among the nations. Do not ask for a better people, because you will lose this one that you have and who you are! His Holiness Serbian Patriarch has done us the honour on this day, too, to offer a service and sacrifice to the Lord and his first called apostle, and share with us the joy and privilege of this “Slava” dining table, and I most gratefully thank him on behalf of my whole family and our Royal House, as well as to all of you who are here and now with us”.
His Holiness Patriarch Irinej of Serbia has said: “Every home in Serbia and every home of Serbs in Diaspora is a part of the Royal House, so in that way Patron St. Day of Crown Prince Alexander is Patron St. Day of all Serbs. He is celebrating it today, as our tradition and customs command, on his behalf, on behalf of the Royal House and the whole Serbian nation. I hope, as well as our Church does, that the Crown Prince will continue tradition of his glorious ancestors, and become the King, as he is entitled by the law and by justice.”
Holy Liturgy and Slava lunch were attended by His Holiness Serbian Patriarch Irinej, His Grace Bishop Jovan of Sumadija, His Grace Bishop Lavrentije of Sabac, His Grace Bishop Dositej of Britain and Scandinavia, His Grace Bishop Ignjtije of Branicevo, His Grace Bishop Joanikije of Budim and Niksic, His Excellency Cardinal Orlando Antonini, Professor Oliver Antic, Special Adviser to the President of the Republic of Serbia, members of the Advisory bodies of the Crown Mr. Branko Terzic, Mr. Dragomir Acovic, Mr. Dusan Babac, Mr. Matija Beckovic, Prof. Dragoljub Kavran, Prof. Miroslav Gasic, Dr Dusan T. Batakovic, Mr. Djordje Djurisic, Dr Slobodan G. Markovic, Dr Cedomir Antic, Mr. Predrag Markovic, Mr Djordje Djurisic, Mr. Darko Spasic.
In the evening there was the Slava reception at the White Palace. To Crown Prince Alexander’s great joy, the Slava reception was attended by His Grace Bishop Arsenije, the Vicar Bishop of Serbian Patriarch, HE Mr. Nedeljko Cubrilovic, President of the National Assembly of the Republic of Srpska, HE Mr. Igor Vidovic, Minister of Economic Affairs and Regional Cooperation in the Government of the Republic of Srpska and many other representatives of the government, the diplomatic corps, members of the Privy Council, the Crown Council and the Crown Cabinet, mayors, academicians, representatives of the Ministry of Interior, Army, monarchist clubs, international organizations, national and international non-government organizations, Rotary clubs, cultural institutions, sports associations, media, health care institutions, as well as a large number of distinguished guests from the cultural, political, business, academic and public life in Serbia.