Predsjednica Grabar-Kitarović dodijelila Velered kralja Dmitra Zvonimira predsjedniku HBK nadbiskupu Želimiru Puljiću
The President of the Republic of Croatia, Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović, bestowed the Grand Order of King Dmitar Zvonimir with Sash and Morning Star upon the President of the Croatian Conference of Bishops and Archbishop of Zadar, Msgr. Želimir Puljić, on February 14, at the Presidential Palace in Zagreb.
The ceremony for posthumously awarding a decoration to the former Archbishop of Zagreb, Cardinal Franjo Kuharić, was followed by the awarding of several decorations to persons in cultural and public life. Among the recipients was the President of the Croatian Conference of Bishops, Archbishop Želimir Puljić.
Bestowing the Grand Order of King Dmitar Zvonimir with Sash and Morning Star upon Archbishop Puljić, President Grabar-Kitarović emphasized that she was pleased to be able to present this decoration to him as the Archbishop of Zadar and President of the Croatian Conference of Bishops. It is a symbol of recognition for the efforts that the Church is making to achieve the unity of the Croatian nation in the homeland and the world, as well as spreading optimism and faith in the strength and love of our people for the homeland.
The President of the Republic thanked Archbishop Puljić for everything he has contributed to the reputation and honor of the Republic of Croatia, the cultivation of good and correct relations between the Croatian society and religious communities, and especially for the activities of the Church among the Croats in cultural and humanitarian areas and activities.
Receiving the decoration, Archbishop Puljić thanked the President of the Republic of Croatia for introducing the spirit of femininity and cultured behavior during her mandate into the atmosphere of politics, which is often contaminated by male aggression, and for promoting social dialogue and consensus wherever needed and possible. The Archbishop praised the idea of Croatia as a Central European and Mediterranean state through the Three Seas Initiative, which President Grabar-Kitarović launched with President Andrzej Duda of Poland.
Msgr. Puljić thanked President Grabar-Kitarović for tirelessly providing political and other support to Croats in Bosnia and Herzegovina, as their constitutional and actual status is of importance to the Republic of Croatia. The archbishop particularly emphasized her spontaneous closeness to people when they rejoice or grieve, when they compete or socialize, as well as when as when they pray or make pilgrimage. He wished God’s blessing to follow her life and work.
The Grand Order of King Dmitar Zvonimir with Sash and Morning Star is an order of the Republic of Croatia, ranking fourth in the order of precedence, and was established on March 10, 1995. It is bestowed upon high Croatian and foreign religious dignitaries and high officials for exceptional contribution to the independence and integrity of the Republic of Croatia, relations between the Croatian state and religious communities, and exceptional success in cultural and humanitarian endeavors. Previous recipients include Academician Ivan Aralica, Dr. Dalibor Brozović, Šime Đodan, Archduke Otto von Habsburg, Dr. Andrija Hebrang, Academician Vlatko Pavletić, Alois Mock, Stjepan Sulimanac, Dr. Jure Radić, Petar Šegedin and others.