Muslim Builds Catholic Church --Bosnia

Retired businessman Husejn Smajic, 68, a Muslim, discovered in 2014 the foundations of a medieval Catholic church on his land in Bugojno (47,000 inhabitants), Bosnia.

The church was destroyed during the 15th century Ottoman invasion. Smajic decided to cede the land and rebuilt the church to show that mixed communities are live well together. The church was consecrated this summer.

Smajic is married to a Catholic and “has managed for 45 years to live with my enemy,” he told (12. August). The couple has three children.

Bosnia (3.5M inhabitans) is divided in Muslims, Catholics (Croats), and Orthodox (Serbs). In Bugojno, most of the Catholic population (34%) was expelled by Muslims during the 1993 war that killed 100,000 people.