Fr. Saša Petrović
Fr. Saša Petrović was born on January 9, 1978 in Ljig, a small town in Šumadija, in central Serbia. The son of Milan and Mirka Petrović, Saša attended church services and took an active role in church life from an early age. Upon completing middle school in his hometown, Saša enrolled at St. Peter of Cetinje Seminary, in Montengro (Crna Gora). He then transferred to Sts. Cyril and Methodius Seminary in Prizren, in the province of Kosovo/Metohija—a region celebrated as the cradle of the Serbian Orthodox Church and culture, but currently under occupation by foreign powers. Having graduated at the top of his class, Saša received a recommendation from the seminary’s dean to continue his education at the St. Sava Serbian Orthodox School of Theology, Libertyville, IL, with a full scholarship.
Upon graduating from St. Sava, Saša met Marija Brković, one of St. Sava’s first female students of theology. Saša and Marija were married at New Gračanica Monastery, in Third Lake, IL, on March 5, 2000. In October of that year, Saša was ordained as a deacon by His Grace Bishop Longin, at St. Nicholas Serbian Orthodox Church in Cudahy, Wisconin. A month later, on November 12, 2000, Fr. Saša was ordained to the priesthood by Bishop Longin at St. Nicholas Serbian Orthodox Church, in Pheonix, Arizona, where he was appointed to serve as parish priest.
In Pheonix, Fr. Saša and Popadija Marija welcomed the birth of their first two children, Jovana and Pavle. While serving the St. Nicholas parish, young Fr. Saša exhibited a great deal of valor and leadership by introducing order and church discipline, which resulted in the revival of church life and a significant increase in church membership. With the help of Popadija Marija, Fr. Saša organized a church Sunday School, which was attended by over seventy children. Due to his father’s illness, Fr. Saša and his family returned to Serbia in 2002, where they remained for ten months in order to help care for him.
The late Metropolitan Christopher, of blessed memory, appointed Fr. Saša to the newly opened mission parish of All Saints, in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, in June of 2003. It was in that year that their third child Andjelija, was born. In Sioux Falls, Fr. Saša and Popadija Marija demonstrated exceptional sacrifice and perseverance for the sake of God’s church, as it took tremendous labor and many tears in order to establish the first Serbian Orthodox Church in South Dakota among only about 40 families of newly arrived Serbian refugees. With the selfless help of St. Nicholas Serbian Orthodox Church, in Omaha, which provided the loan, the parish of All Saints purchased a beautiful property with an existing church and parish home on a two-acre lot. Soon after that, the parish of All Saints acquired the cemetery adjacent to the property.
Upon the retirement of the late Fr. Vojislav Dosenović, of blessed memory, Metropolitan Christopher appointed Fr. Saša to St. Nicholas Serbian Orthodox Church, in Omaha, on December 4, 2005. Fr. Saša has continued to serve here ever since. Within a few months of arriving in Omaha, Fr. Saša and Popadija Marija were blessed with their fourth child, Petar.
During St. Nicholas Church’s Slava of 2015, with the Blessing of Bishop Longin, His Grace Bishop Sava of Slavonija (ret.) awarded Fr. Saša and Popadija Marija with the rank of Protopresbyter and Protinica, as recognition for their dedication and love for the Church.
Fr. Saša and his family are entirely dedicated to the church of St. Nicholas and are fully involved in all aspects of its community life. Father is always ready to listen to his parishioners and to help them with every need. He is also very handy and always ready to tackle virtually any problem. When he is able to enjoy a little spare time, Fr. Saša loves to occupy himself with gardening, wood crafting, fishing, and hunting.
The parishioners of St. Nicholas are truly blessed to have Fr. Saša and his young family among them. We hope to have them for many years to come!