Senior Citizens / Pensioners

1976 – 5 Acres of land is bought after the decision was made by the local Macedonian community to build a church and community hall. At a community general meeting, it was decided to name the church – Saint John the Baptist.
1977 – After a few local Macedonians started to ask the question why other communities were being represented at various local festivals and why the Macedonians were not represented, a handful of their Macedonian friends decided to gather their children and start to have dancing practice in their homes and garages. This was the first inception of a Macedonian dancing group in Geelong. The lessons were based on traditional Macedonian dance steps that everyone knew. A few years later, the ethnic Macedonian school “Kole Kaninski” was formed, and the dancing group was formally named “Biser”, meaning pure or a string of pearls. Since then, Biser has represented the Geelong Macedonian Community at every single Pako Festa since 1981 and dozens of other local festivals and events.
15th January 1978 – A ceremony was held where the foundations of the church were
blessed.
11th May 1980 – The church has been completed and blessed by the Bishop Kiril from Macedonia, and father Chedomir Ilievski was appointed the first priest for the new St. John the Baptist Church.
1997 – Biser Dance Group tours the republic of Macedonia as official guests of the government, performaing all over the country over a period of 2 weeks, culminating in performances celebrating the National Macedonian Day – “Ilinden”
2005 – Church is completely renovated and extended upwards with the addition of a
steeple.

Macedonian Senior Citizens Group
President: Strebre (Steve) Sobevski
Phone: 0411 787 794

5 th February 2006 – The renovated church is blessed by the Metropolitan of Australian and New Zealand Diocese Bishop Peter.
2008 – New chandelier from Macedonian is purchased and mounted in the centre of the church.
2009 – New wood hand-carved frame for mounting the iconostas arrives from Macedonia and is installed, greatly enhancing the beauty of our church. 2011 – Biser Dancing Group toured the Republic of Macedonia, with performances in Skopje, Ohrid, Prilep and Bitola. 16 dancers and their families toured throughout Macedonia as part of the 14 day tour, with a total of 45 dancers, parents, siblings and even grandparents joining the tour. The unforgettable tour was the culmination of over 18 months of fundraising to subsidise some of the travel costs, with special thanks to Diversitat for their ongoing support.
2020 – After receiving a capital work grant from the Victorian Multicultural Commission, a new Multipurpose Facility is being constructed on our premises, providing a much more comfortable “home-base” for the growing number of Macedonian senior citizens to regularly meet and gather in a relaxed atmosphere.