Basil was born in Popovo Selo in Herzegovina, of simple and devout
parents. From his youth he was filled with love for the Church of God,
and when he grew up he went to the monastery of the Dormition of the
Mother of God at Trebinje, and became a monk. As such, he quickly became
known for his serious and rare ascetic life, for he loaded himself with
ascetic practices, each harder than the last. He was later chosen and
consecrated as Bishop of Zahum and Skenderia, much against his will.
As a bishop, he first lived in the monastery at Tvrdog, whence, as a
good pastor, he confirmed his flock in the Orthodox faith, keeping it
from the cruelty of the Turks and the guile of the Latins. But when
he was too pressed-upon by his enemies, and when Tvrdog* destroyed by
the Turks, Basil moved to Ostrog, where he lived in strict asceticism,
protecting his flock by his unceasing and loving prayers. He went peacefully
to the Lord in the 16th century, leaving his whole and healing body,
uncorrupt and wonderworking, to the present day. The miracles at the
grave of St. Basil are without number. Both Christians and Moslems hasten
to his relics and find healing of the gravest sicknesses and sufferings.
A great national gathering takes place there every year at Pentecost.
* - Author's Note: A new church, on the ruins of the old
Tvrdog, has been built in our day by Nikolai Runjevac, from the village
of Poljica near Trebinje - a wonderful foundation in the sight of God
and His people.
Bishop Nikolai Velimirovic, "The Prologue from Ochrid", April