"It is very important that we have here different cultures and religions, and that based on that we can easily build and verify our own identities," said Nektarije, a deacon at the Orthodox monastery Zitomislici in what is now the Catholic Croat-dominated southern part of the country.
The 1992–95 war left nearly 100,000 dead or missing and displaced 1.8 million people.
But the integration of Bosnians has not been without challenges and missteps. A decade ago, Bosnians and city officials clashed over the size of backyard smokehouses, beloved by Bosnians.
He has helped thousands of immigrants find their way If you walk into a Bosnian home in the St.
Louis area, there's a good chance Ron Klutho's phone number is posted on the refrigerator or some other prominent place. Pius V Catholic Church's refugee support program on South Grand Boulevard when the first wave of Bosnians were relocated here.
Louis.” Klutho went to the International Institute, the primary resettling agency in St. “From that, to this,” he says, patting a fat address book, stuffed with hundreds of hand-written phone numbers, email addresses and notes. This system work for me,” said Ron Klutho, explaining his tattered address book, stuffed with hundreds of hand-written phone numbers, addresses and emails of Bosnians he has met and helped over the last 20 years in St. It was through those connections that he tried to fulfill the requests from the city’s new residents. medical assistance, getting into schools, learning about college entrance exams. Someone asked me for a kidney transplant.” Klutho’s night job for about six years was teaching English as a second language at St.
Louis Community College’s Forest Park campus, where he met more Bosnians.
But the neighborhood shows only a part of how a community 70,000 strong has come to define itself and its relationship with a region it now calls home. Louis Bosnians have followed their aspirations to the suburbs, seeking better schools, safer neighborhoods and houses on expansive lots.
In the process, the Bosnian footprint on the region has expanded to south St. Affton, Bayless, Hancock Place and Mehlville schools have seen their international student population jump and bolster sagging enrollments and soccer programs.
"Sarajevo is the best proof that living together is possible and that it represents the only way of life for us," he said.