Joint Synod Meeting of the Reformed Church and the Lutheran Church in Hungary

2017. október 13., péntek

On the occasion of the 500th anniversary of the Reformation, the Reformed Church in Hungary and the Evangelical-Lutheran Church in Hungary held a joint Synod meeting and worship service in Budapest.

Today, the Reformed Church in Hungary and the Evangelical- Lutheran Church in Hungary held a joint Synod meeting and worship service in Budapest. The morning worship service was held in a Lutheran Church in Városliget, Budapest, while the afternoon session took place in a Reformed Church in VÁrosliget. At the festive worship ended with Lord's Supper, sermons were given by Presiding Bishop of the Evangelical-Lutheran Church in Hungary Péter Gáncs and the Presiding Bishop of RCH István Szabó.  At the press conference prior to the worship Bishop Szabó spoke to the importance of the event, saying: The main aim of the Synod is the commemoration of the central message of the Reformation and "we want to strengthen each other in the commitment to celebrate and proclaim that Christ as the only solution for those searching for God in midst of distress and hardhip." And he also said:“Following Jesus Christ has consequences in today's world, it would be nice if we could say ‘good afternoon’, and not plan to meet again for another five hundred years, but we can’t, there are many questions and many issues that we need to discuss together, with each other's ministry and mission, to be able to spread the word to the people of God and to those who are searching for God in distress and disorder."

As part of the Joint Synod Meeting,  Dr András Reuss, Professor emeritus of Systematic Theology of the Theological University of the Evangelical-Lutheran Church in Hungary gave a lecture which was followed by Rev László Köntös, Vice-Bishop of the Transdanubian Reformed Church District of RCH 

The attendees were also greeted by Gergely Prőhle, Lay President of the Evangelical-Lutheran Church in Hungary and Bishop Sándor Zán Fábián from the Reformed Church in Transcarpathia (Ukraine).

Speaking and reading in our mother tongue had an important role at the time of Reformation and it still has today in Hungary and beyond Hungary’s border. The commitment to the Word of God in your own language meant survival at that time and still today, this need is felt the most by those living beyond the Hungarian border, like in Ukraine. It is extremely important to express our togetherness and our unity. Our past witnesses it, our present demonstrates it and we have to have hope for this in the future, that against all hardships we can stay and live out what brings us together, that we can accept the differences we have between Reformed and Lutheran communities. All this does not separate us, but encourages us towards healthy mutual listening and inclusion. 

 

On this coming Sunday we the Hungarian Reformed people in Sub-Carpathia will gather together to remember the anniversary of the Reformation. I invite the members of this Joint Synod meeting as well to pray that our children and grandchildren may experience and spread the Reformation through prayer. -said Bishop Zán of the Reformed Church in Sub-Carpathia/Ukraine

The Joint Synod Meeting concluded by adopting a Common Message of the two Protestnat Churches in Hungary.  We encourage our brothers and sisters to table and pulpit fellowship, according to the centuries old tradition and to relevant agreements (e.g. the Leuenberg Agreement), which exemplifies the realisation and experience of our Unity in Christ.” 

At the end of the celebratory program, members of the two Synods participated a wreath laying ceremony in the Reformation Memorial Park nearby the Reformed and the Lutheran Churches.

Read the full text of the Message of the Joint Synod of the Reformed Church and the Lutheran Church in Hungary at the occasion of the 500th Jubilee of Reformation

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