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Ivan Merz and his Contribution to the Moulding of Croatian Eagleship

Institute of Philosophy and Theology of Society of Jesus
Publication Date
  • Ivan Merz
  • Hrvatski Orlovski Savez
  • Hrvatska Orlovska Posebnost
  • Katolička Akcija
  • Duhovnik–Svećenik
  • Apolitičnost
  • Tjelesna Kultura
  • Ivan Merz
  • The Association Of Croatian Eagles
  • The Distinctiveness Of Croatian Eagleship
  • Catholic Action
  • Spiritual Leader/Priest
  • Apolitical Nature
  • Physical Education
  • Education
  • Political Science


This article presents us with a redefinition of terms outlining Ivan Merz’s work in the Association of Croatian Eagles with special reference to the specificity which Merz introduced into the Association: activites based on guidelines laid down by the Catholic Action Movement, the bringing into the Association of Croatian Eagles a spiritual leader/priest as a representative of the Church, the affirmation of the apolitical nature of the Association of Croation Eagles and also its new orientation brought about by the fresh context and spirituality which Merz lent to physical education. The aforementioned features were for the first time fused together under a new term — the distinctiveness of Croatian Eagleship. Merz’s influence and the introduction of a certain specificity into the Association of Croatian Eagles constitute the essence of the new direction taken by Croatian Eagleship, which during the time of his active participation took on a powerful religious–paedagogical–cultural dimension with a pronouncedly spiritualised program of physical education. For the first time, the Catholic Action Movement is introduced into an organization of the eagleship type as well as an orientation based on the encyclical Ubi Arcano Dei. Merz thus became one of the first advocates of Catholic Action in Croatia, thereby directly affecting the development of the Association of Croatian Eagles and its new orientation.

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