A good end cannot sanctify evil means; nor must we ever do evil, that good may come of it... We are too ready to retaliate, rather than forgive... And yet we could hurt no man that we believe loves us. Let us try then what love will do: for if men did once see we love them, we should soon find they would not harm us. Force may subdue, but Love gains: and he that forgives first, wins the laurel.
William Penn

Be patterns, be examples in all countries, places, islands, nations wherever you come; that your carriage and life may preach among all sorts of people, and to them; then you will come to walk cheerfully over the world, answering that of God in everyone...
George Fox

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Serbian Saints, and One Belgian Saint

Vesna of Uzice

When we arrived in the city of Uzice, we thought we would have to find an internet cafe to reach our Couchsurfing host, Vesna. Instead, as we walked into this rather large city with the little black dog, Vesna miraculously spotted us on the street and gave us directions to her home. We first spent some time in the city with her other guests, students from Greece, Poland and Russia. We then climbed up a mountain and had our sanctuary for the night. Before leaving Vesna assured us she would contact some friends in another city, Kraljevo, to help us find hosts there.

Stepo of Lucani

After a few more nights of camping, we arrived in a small town called Lucani. I was feeling rather despondent, and sitting outside a supermarket while Inge did the shopping inside, when a man named Stepo stepped up to offer us a place to stay for the night. While in Lucani Stepo introduced us to his family and paid for our meals as well. Stepo s kindness lifted both of us out of our forlorn moods, and we were ready to go on the next day. Many thanks to you, Stepo.

Inge, Patron Saint of Abandoned Animals

Our next destination with a host was the city of Kraljevo, and we were just about to reach it after more nights in our tents when Inge discovered a sack full of newborn puppies by the side of the road. We found a vet and bought some puppy formula, then managed to find a bottle to feed them with. In Kraljevo we met the host arranged for us by Vesna, and we are now in what seems to us a safe house, feeding the puppies and licking our own wounds. Of course, Inge the Saint of Stray Dogs and Cats is bearing most of the burden in keeping the puppies alive. Tomorrow we will be looking for a way to leave the puppies with other, local animal lovers before moving on. Otherwise, we will be trying to take care of them ourselves as we make our way towards Bulgaria.

Next blog, more saints in Kraljevo.

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