Visoko, Bosnia and Herzegovina


Photographer: Jasmin Brutus

Year of Submission: 2016 (Educators Edition) 

Fra Ivan teaches Latin and Croatian in a school run by Franciscan monks in Visoko, a town of 17,000 people close to Sarajevo, the capital of Bosnia and Herzegovina. Twenty years ago, it stood on the frontline of fighting between Serbs, Bosniaks and Croats. Today, government-funded and free for all, its students include Muslims and Orthodox Christians as well as Catholics. Now in his mid-40s, Fra Ivan has been with the Franciscan order for twenty years. “Silentium est approbationem – silence is approval,” he tells his pupils. “If you see someone beating a child or a dog and you walk by, you are giving your approval.”