Nikolai Velimirovic (December 23/January 5, 1880 - March 5/March 18, 1956) born in the small village of Lelich in western Serbia. He attended the Seminary of St Sava in Belgrade and graduated in 1905. He obtained doctorates from the University of Berne (1908) and from Oxford University (1909). In 1919, then then Archimandrite Nikolai was consecrated Bishop of Zica of the Serbian Orthodox Church.
During the Second World War in 1941 Bishop Nikolai was arrested by the Nazis. He was confined in Ljubostir Vojlovici Monastery until September 1944. He was then sent to the Nazi death camp at Dachau, together with Serbian Patriarch Gavrilo. At Dachau he witnessed and was himself tortured until the camp was liberated in May 1945 by the United States Army.
After the War he left Communist Marshal Tito controlled Yugoslavia and immigrated as a refugee to the United States in 1946 where he taught at several Orthodox Christian seminaries such as St. Sava's Seminary in Libertyville, Illinois and St. Tikhon's Seminary and Monastery in Johnstown, Pennsylvania and St. Vladimir's Seminary now in Scarsdale, New York (associated with Columbia University).
Nikolai was recently canonized as a saint by the Serbian Orthodox Church.
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