St. Sava’s Architecture

St. Sava Serbian Otrhodox Church of San Gabriel History, Architecture and Church Interior Iconography

The first step in building St. Sava church began by forming a construction committee, on April 12, 1981. The committee consisted of father Petar Jovanovic, John Pecel, William Radulovich, Petar Kujundzich, Nick Kavic, Stanley Vukoje, Nick Pekovich, George Gustovich and Daniel Pavich. Petar Kujundzich was elected to be the chair person for the committee and in charge of overviewing the building of the church. The president of the church school congregation at that time was George Vukazich. St. Sava church is unique in its architecture. One can see a mixture of artistic motifs taken from many churches built in the early Byzantine tradition. The architect Konstantin Zurdumlis, of Greek descent, was raised in the town of Krusevac, Serbia. That is probably why the St. Sava church, with its height and splendid rosettas, so strongly resembles the church of St. Lazarus (Lazarica) of Krusevac. St. Sava church was completed and consecrated on October 28, 1984. One year later, St. Sava congregation voted to hire Mr. Sirio Tonelli, a famous Italian artist to work on beautifying the church interior with Byzantine mosaic art. Mr. Tonelli installed beautiful murals of mosaic in many Serbian and Greek orthodox churches, and is a nationally recognized artist. Up until now, one half of the church interior has been completed, and judging by what has been done so far, the church looks majestic making a very spiritual impression on everyone who comes to visit. St. Sava church was featured several times on Hugh Houser TV show and has been visited by many people who admire its beauty. St. Sava church also houses many beautiful icons. The iconostasis is imported from Greece, and is specially hand carved in oak. All icons have been painted by a famous Serbian artist Dragan Jasovic of Belgrade, Serbia.  We humbly welcome all donations for the completion of our St. Sava church interior.