Nicolaus Schneider recipient of honorary doctorate from Károli Gáspár University

2013. június 14., péntek

Nicolaus Schneider, president of the Evangelical Church in Germany has received an honorary doctorate Tuesday from Károli Gáspár University of the Reformed Church in Hungary alongside German literature professor August Stahl and English history professor Martyn Charles Rady.

In addition to the laureates and their families, the presidium of the Reformed Church in Hungary, Presiding Bishop Dr. Gusztáv Bölcskei, and Lay President Pál Huszár, was also present for the ceremony as well as Dr. Péter Balla, rector of Károli Gáspár. D. Matei I. Hoffmann, German Ambassador to Hungary, and János Jákob, bishop of the Protestant military chaplaincy, also graced the occasion with their presence.

Balla presented in his commendation speech the life of Nicolaus Schneider, who was born in 1947 in Duisburg. He became a devoted pastor in 1976. In 1987, he was elected rural dean, and in ten years became personnel director of the national office of the Church, and also deputy-chairman of the Rhenish Protestant Church.

Later, in 2003 he became chairman and fulfilled the function for ten years, until this February. Meanwhile in 2009, he was elected chairman of the Council of the Evangelical Church in Germany, within the next year he had become executive of his Church and then was elected president.

He has already received many awards and honours from various German institutions.

Balla emphasized that Schneider has always preached the equality of people as a pastor, and believes that they all share a vocation of commitment towards those in need, as mankind was created in God's image. He has also made a stand for all the workers struggling to keep their jobs, and concerned himself with social issues ever since.

At the end, the rector noted that Schneider and his wife have raised three daughters, the youngest of which passed away a few years ago as a result of a tumour. The mourning parents have commemorated their daughter's life, death and example in a book to help other families deal with such tragedies.

Next, Dr. Anita Czeglédi spoke about Dr. August Stahl, German literary professor and a great researcher of Austrian literature. He is an advocate of Károli Gáspár University. He has given many lectures there, and also supports the institution's international relations.

The third laureate of the day, Dr. Martyn Charles Rady, was recognized by Dr. György Kurucz, associate professor. Rady wrote his dissertation on medieval Hungarian history, particularly on the city of Buda. His main field of study is the Habsburg Monarchy, and especially Hungary within it.

Representing the General Synod of the RCH, Dr. Gusztáv Bölcskei congratulated the laureates, and spoke about the general European scale of values, which he said they all share with the community of Károli Gáspár.

During the festivities, Schneider lectured on the relation of state and church.

The university hopes that not only personal relations will be strengthened in thanks to the honorary doctorates, but also those relations between their institutions.


Translated by Andrea Molnár

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