Reformed Christian Church in Serbia

The Reformed Christian Church in Serbia was originally part of the greater Hungarian Reformed Church. After the First World War, Hungary lost two-thirds of its territory, and the Hungarian Reformed communities beyond the new boarders of Hungary were forced to reorganize. The Hungarian Reformed communities in this new region ended up living as dual minorities, being Hungarian and Reformed.

The first Hungarian translations of the Bible were brought during the Hussite movement to the southern regions of the Hungarian Kingdom (called Délvidék or Vojvodina) and the Ottoman Empire. At the time of the Reformation, Reformed pastor, Mihály Sztárai introduced and then planted 120 Reformed congregations in the region. After the fall of the Ottoman Empire, many Reformed Hungarians moved from Debrecen, in the north, to the southern regions.  In the First World War, Hungary lost two-thirds of its territory, including the southern regions, now part of Serbia. In 1933, the Reformed Christian Church in the Yugoslavian Kingdom was established and approximately 55 000 Reformed people of Hungarian, German, Czech, and Croatian origin were active members of the Church. During the Second World War, the region and the Church were reunited as a part of Hungary and the Hungarian Reformed Church. However, after War, the same territories were, again, torn from country.

During the Cold War, church properties were nationalized, causing the churches to struggle financially. In 1953, the Law on Religion freed the properties from the state, allowing autonomy of the church and maintenance of international ecumenical relations. In the 1970s, the Church faced another obstacle. Due to the lack of theological institutions, the number of Reformed pastors and congregation members decreased dramatically. After the breakup of Yugoslavia, as well as Reformed Christian Church of Yugoslavia, the Hungarian-speaking Reformed communities living in the, now, northern part of Serbia, specifically Vojvodina, reorganized to the Reformed Christian Church in Serbia.

Today, the Church keeps the same confessions as the Reformed Church in Hungary, the Second Helvetic Confession and the Heidelberg Catechism. The Reformed Christian Church in Serbia has 19 pastors serving 17 000 members in 50 congregations. Among the priorities of the Church are the dedication to the children and young people. Despite the financial challenges, the ministers and members of the Church takes its mission for the children and young people very seriously. Currently, the Reformed Christian Church in Serbia is an active member of the Conference of European Protestant Churches (CPCE), the Conference of European Churches (CEC), the World Communion of Reformed Churches (WCRC), and the World Council of Churches.

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Reformed Church in Hungary

Address: H-1146 Budapest, Abonyi utca 21.   

PO Box: 1140 Budapest 70, Pf. 5

Phone/Fax: + 36 1 460 0708 

Email: oikumene@reformatus.hu





Our church through American eyes

 

We encourage you to read our  former GM intern Kearstin Bailey's blog about her time, spent in Hungary.