Saint Stefan Urosh, Tsar of Serbia

Commemorated on December 2

      Saint Stefan Urosh, Tsar of Serbia, was son of tsar Dushan Nemany, and was born in the year 1337. In 1346 he was crowned king. Dushan sought the daughter of the French king for his son, but the Roman pope insisted that the princess not change from the Latin confession. Dushan did not want to see a Catholic in his family, and because of this Saint Stefan Urosh entered into marriage with the daughter of Vlad, prince of Valachia.
      Upon the death of his father (+ 1355), Saint Stefan Urosh became the independent and actual ruler of Serbia. He was faithful to the Lord, like a father he provided for widows and orphans, he pacified quarrels and maintained peace, he was charitable to the poor, and defended the downtrodden.
      In the interests of peace in Serbia and indeed for the preservation of his own life, Saint Stefan was obliged to flee to his kinsman, prince Lazar. Saint Stefan's uncle, Vulkashin, immediately seized the throne, but his fear of rivals gave him no peace. Through his sister, the mother of Saint Stefan, he invited his nephew to come to the city of Skopje, on the ruse of a reconciliation. Greeting him with honour, as tsar, he invited him to go hunting. When Saint Stefan, weary from the hunt, went off with his horse to a well and bent over to take a sip of water, Vulkashin struck him a mortal blow on the head with a mace (+ 1367).

1996-2001 by translator Fr. S. Janos.

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