London Metropolitan University Research Institutes

Father Ciril Božič’s role in the Slovene religious centre in Australia for the preservation of Slovene emigrants’ citizenship in a changing world

Author(s) Goriup, J.  
Publisher London: CiCe  
Year 2011  
Editor P. Cunningham & N. Fretwell, Europe's Future: Citizenship in a Changing World  
Age group -  
Intense emigration of Slovenes to Australia, especially Victoria State, started after WWII and reached a climax in the 1970s. Despite the fact that Slovenians in Australia are the fourth largest non-European Slovene emigrant community they needed to be organized in cultural and social life in a particular way. The article discusses one of the major and first organizations concerned with Slovene emigration -The religious centre of the Holy Brothers Cyril and Method in Kew, Melbourne - which was (and still is) a shelter for many of the emigrants. Particular emphasis is placed on the role of the Franciscan priest Ciril Božič, and aims relating to social and educational roles in the preservation of the Slovene Heritage and integration into Australian everyday life. Based on several historical, sociological and political views, the paper shows the institution of Slovene Religious Centre as well as the development and importance of the Father’s role. The paper is also informed by quantitative data based on 225 survey questionnaires, and qualitative data from 70 global interviews. Key words: identity management, emigration, Slovene emigrant community, Franciscan priest

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