1300 Corporals

Fundraising Initiative

THE VISION BECOMING
A REALITY

LET US FIGHT THE GOOD FIGHT!

“Pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, endurance and gentleness, Fight the good fight of the faith,” (1.Tim 6:12) writes the Holy Apostle Paul in his letter to Timothy. We strive to live by these virtues as we build St. Sava College, and seeing it finished and opened is very much our “good fight for the faith.” As we double down to complete the building project let us always be mindful that in doing this for our children we are at the same time fulfilling a commandment: “to do good, to be rich in good deeds, and to be generous and willing to share.” (1.Tim 6…) Let each and every one of us contribute to the completion of the College, in whatever way possible. On these pages you will learn about the 1300 Corporals and the St. Sava College Corporals initiative which echoes the determination, dedication and sacrifice of some of our most exemplary predecessors. May the Lord make us all worthy to follow in their footsteps.

Grace be with you all!


Bishop Siluan

THE STORY OF THE
1300 CORPORALS

“This is the only example in history where a small country, Serbia, sends its flowers into war, into fighting units. Its future. Its whole intellectual youth, as a last hope for the country’s salvation.”

London Observer December 1914.

WHO WERE THE 1300 CORPORALS?

Following the outbreak of WW1 in June of 1914, Serbia was crushed by the invading Austro-Hungarian Army. By November Valjevo and Belgrade had fallen, and the Serbian Army was in retreat. The entire Serbian male population had been mobilised – peasants, professionals, craftsmen and merchants. Students from all over Serbia and those studying and working in the Austro-Hungarian Empire heeded the call to service, returned to Serbia and were assigned to a military training facility in Skoplje. General Zivojin Misic called all able bodied men to join forces for a critically important military operation at the Kolubara River. 1300 students, with little to no military training, rallied together, left Skoplje on the 2nd of November and arrived on the front line prepared to make the ultimate sacrifice for their country and kin. The fresh-faced youngsters were immediately given the rank of corporal and from then on became known as the 1300 Corporals. Their inspiring patriotism raised the morale of the dejected and desperate Serbian Army, spurring them on to a decisive military victory over the vastly superior enemy, which culminated in the liberation of Belgrade. Four hundred corporals died in the battle and a further five hundred perished in other military operations before the war ended.

WHY IS SO LITTLE KNOWN ABOUT THE 1300 CORPORALS TODAY?

The communist leader and lifelong president of post WWII communist Yugoslavia, Josip Broz, was a prominent soldier in the Austro Hungarian Army during WWI. This army committed unspeakable atrocities against Serbian civilians in western Serbia, an uncomfortable fact that had to be hidden from the broader Yugoslav public and from the Serbs in particular. And so, the story of the 1300 Corporals was washed from the pages of Serbian history.

WHY IS THEIR STORY SO IMPORTANT?

Thousands of Australian soldiers went to their heroic death in Gallipoli during WWI, a chapter in Australian history that has served as an example of selflessness and sacrifice that will continue to inspire generations as Australia moves forward as the most successful multicultural nation in the world. The 1300 Corporals, some as young as 16 years of age, students of architecture, mathematics, literature, art and music, abandoned their studies and sacrificed their lives out of love for their kin and country. For the Serbs, The 1300 Corporals stand side by side with the ANZACS. As Australian Serbs, we can be doubly proud of our legends of yesteryear. Lest we forget!

GREATER LOVE HAS NO ONE THAN THIS; THAT HE LAY DOWN HIS LIFE FOR HIS FRIENDS.

– JOHN 15:13

These are Christ’s own words. And there is an urgency for all of us who call ourselves Christians, to think long and hard about them. Christ sacrificed Himself on the Cross for us and for our salvation. The 1300 Corporals laid down their lives for their countrymen and for freedom. We are called to make sacrifices for others every day, and we should do so joyfully.

THE 1300 CORPORALS AND ST. SAVA COLLEGE

Giving up your life and giving up on life are not the same thing. The 1300 Corporals did not give up on life, rather they gave up their young lives, for very good reason. As we intensify our efforts to complete St. Sava College, we will honour them by erecting a memorial to them on the grounds of the College. Furthermore, we have embarked on a fundraising initiative for the completion of the building project titled, the “St. Sava College Corporals”. The Church is calling for 1300 volounteers, 1300 College Corporals, who will donate $1,000 each, thus contributing to our target of $1.3 million needed to complete the building. 100 years qgo, the “last hope of our nation”, made the ultimate sacrifice for Serbia. Let us honour them and in their name contribute to the completion of St. Sava College. $1,000 is not a paltry amount of money for any individual to part with, but it a very significant contribution to a huge collective effort for which our children, and our children’s children will be most grateful.

HOW DO I BECOME A COLLEGE CORPORAL?

Its simple. Make a fully tax deductible donation of $1,000 to the St. Sava Serbian Orthodox College Building Fund.

DONATE NOW

All payments will be automatically receipted by email. Donations are used exclusively for funding the building programme.

THE 1300 CORPORALS MEMORIAL

At present, architects and designers are consulting on the most appropriate location for the placement of the memorial. The provisional sketch, featuring uniformed soldiers holding symbols of their intended professions, will be developed either into a painted mural or a bronze cast plaque mounted on a plinth. In recognition of their contribution, the names of all College Corporals will be added to the monument This is an exciting project and all contributors will be kept updated on its progress.

Concept drawing for the proposed 1300 Corporals Memorial plaque
Concept drawing for the proposed 1300 Corporals Memorial plaque

BUILDING PROGRESS

“With God’s blessing and your active participation and support, we will bring the building of stage one to a close very soon!”

As donations come in, the project continues to grow. A significant amount of work has been undertaken over the past few months. The internal fit-out of classrooms, offices, the chapel and other spaces is well under way. The construction of the tower which graces the front of the building is nearing completion. Air conditioning is being installed and lighting and electrical installations are in progress.

DONATE NOW

WHAT ELSE IS THERE TO BE DONE?

Lots! Landscaping costs come close to $100,000 – fencing, playing fields, earthmoving, planting and so on. There is another $40,000 or so needed for bathrooms, kitchen and sanitary fixtures, $60.000 for fire protection, $100,000 for air conditioning, $80,000 for hydraulic work, $120,000 for floor finishes, $200,000 for electrical work and so much more. With God’s blessing and your active participation and support, we will bring the building of stage one to its conclusion, very soon!

Check our website and Facebook page for updates on our staged fundraising goals and activities.

LET US FIGHT THE GOOD FIGHT!
BECOME A

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