||This article includes a list of references, related reading or external links, but its sources remain unclear because it lacks inline citations. (April 2014)|
|Saint Nikola Tavelić|
|Died||November 14, 1391
|Venerated in||Roman Catholic Church|
|Beatified||1889, Rome by Leo XIII|
|Canonized||June 21, 1970, Rome by Paul VI|
Most sources mention Šibenik as Nikola's birthplace, but another possible location is Velim near Stankovci. In 1365, Nikola became a friar in Bribir, the seat of the Šubić, a powerful Croatian noble family.
Nikola was among 60 priests from various Franciscan provinces who were called by the Bosnian vicar, motivated by Pope Gregory XI, to work as missionaries in Bosnia. He spread Catholicism around Bosnia for 12 years. In his report to the pope, the Bosnian vicar later said that the missionaries converted around 50,000 Bosnian heretics.
In 1384, Nikola went to Palestine with the Franciscans Deodatus Aribert from Rodez, Peter from Narbonne and Stephen from Cuneo. He stayed in the Mount Zion Monastery in Jerusalem, learning Arabic and visiting holy places. Together with his three friends, he was brought before the qadi of Jerusalem and sentenced to death. All four missionaries were martyred near the Jaffa Gate on November 14, 1391.
The Franciscan Gerard Chalvet headed the monastery of Holy Salvation and saw their execution. Together with the Franciscan Martin from Šibenik, he sent a detailed report to Europe: Pope, Leipzig, Šibenik and elsewhere. Nikola was celebrated as a martyr by Franciscans all over Europe, especially in Šibenik.
Five centuries later, in 1880, the bishop Antun Josip Fosco from Šibenik started the procedure for the Holy See to beatify Nikola Tavelić. It was done by a special decree of the pope Leo XIII for the Šibenik Diocese in 1889 and for the entire Franciscan Order in 1898. Two years later, the same thing was done for the Holy Land.
The feast day of Saint Nikola Tavelić and companions is November 14.
Most churches built in his name are located in Croatia. Some of them are in Banjevci, Cerovac, Lišani, Perković, Split, Vinjani, Zagreb, Rijeka and Županja. Churches abroad can be found in Hurlingham, Buenos Aires in Argentina, Montreal and Winnipeg in Canada, Melbourne and Sydney in Australia and Tomislavgrad in Bosnia-Herzegovina
- D. Mandić: Documenta martyrii beati Tavelic, Roma 1958.
- A. Crnica, Historico-iuridica dilucidatio vitae, martyrii et gloriae beati N. Tavelic, Roma 1958,