The devastating war erupted following the dissolution of Yugoslavia and resulted in an estimated 100,000 deaths. A significant proportion of Croats who lived in Bugojno and once made up a third of its inhabitants were expelled from the region during the bloody conflict, while others were killed or imprisoned.
Our Lady of the Angels was built after Husejn Smajic, a 68-year-old Muslim, discovered the foundations of a medieval church on his property.
It is believed that the skeleton also discovered is that of Queen Jelena Gruba, who is thought to have ruled the Kingdom of Bosnia from September 1395 until late spring 1398.
Using his own money and other donations, the Muslim agreed with Cardinal Puljic that an identical church should be built near this archaeological site as a gesture toward peace and unity.
Smajic told the Sarajevo Times: “I did it for the love of this people, for the love of our country, for the love of unity, so that we don’t separate but respect each other as…