During the peace camp in Medena in the summer of 2021, a collection of stories was compiled about people who stood up to nationalism, enmity and hatred both during the wars in the former Yugoslavia and also nowadays, and helped the so-called „others“ across ethnic borders. The stories, telling about neighbours, family members or teachers of the participants, were written down by them afterwards.
In the fourth part of our series, Milan from Vukovar in Croatia shares a story – this time one from the present.
My name is Milan, I am 19 years old and I come from Vukovar, Croatia. As a young person in this town, I can say that situation is at the moment relatively inconvenient. In recent years, Vukovar has often been mentioned in the context of , fights, conflicts and similar events, but there are always a few examples that prove otherwise. As one such example, I would choose two religion teachers from the Dragutin Tadijanović School. Their idea was to ‘switch’ their roles as part of a class called ‘Christians in a Different Way’, which is part of the 7th grade curriculum. That way, children who study catholic religious education heard about the serbian orthodox Church from the point of view of an orthodox religious teacher, and children who study orthodox religious education heard about the catholic Church from the point of view of a catholic religious teacher. The big idea behind this was to show to kids that religious affiliation, nationality, etc. are actually things that influence a person’s opinion about another person. The reactions of the children exceeded all expectations, and the result was numerous questions and sub-questions. It is normal that as individuals we differ from each other in attitudes, opinions, personal habits, but it is important to remember that these differences are what make us special and richer. It is very important to love, to have understanding for others, and above all to respect each other.