Due to the war in Ukraine, human lives are at risk, people lack basic supplies and have been forced to leave their homes. IDPs have reached the Western part of Ukraine and refugees are arriving to Hungary in growing numbers. The Hungarian Reformed Church Aid has been providing emergency response from the first day. Daily update.
Common prayer strengthens (www.reformatus.hu)
We need God and each other to not only get through this time physically, but also to strengthen our souls, said bishop Zoltán Balog, ministerial president of the Synod of the Reformed Church in Hungary, when asked about the prayer meeting for refugees in Hungary. All refugees from Transcarpathia and other parts of Ukraine are welcomed to the church of the Reformed congregation of Budapest-Fasor for a common prayer service on 20 March at 7 pm.
Why did you think it was important to organise a central prayer service for refugees fleeing the conflict in Ukraine in Budapest?
We need God and we need each other, not only to get through this time physically, but also to strengthen our souls. This is one of the reasons why my fellow Bishops and our charity's Goodwill Ambassador, who has since been elected President of the Republic, recently visited the pastors and leaders of Transcarpathian pastors. We also see that it is not only those Hungarians in Transcarpathia who have stayed at home who need physical and spiritual support, but also those who have crossed the border because they did not feel safe. We also have a responsibility for them.
Why can the evening prayer service on 20 March be a good opportunity to assume this responsibility?
Prayer is not only a way of keeping in touch with God, but also a way of strengthening the community of those who pray together. And those who flee - whether they are believers in Christ or not - need community. Our brothers and sisters from Transcarpathia, who were already members of the Reformed Church, can now be strengthened in their unity with the believers in the motherland. And those whose refugee status prompts them to enter the church door, perhaps for the first time in their lives, can experience the power of Christian fellowship, of turning together to God. On this occasion we want to express that true peace can be found in God.
A child who was in a car accident while fleeing has been admitted to Bethesda (08:04)
Patients from Ukraine are coming to Bethesda Reformed Children's Hospital for both quick examinations and longer treatments, according to a Facebook post from the hospital. They also write that some mothers have been admitted after being in a car accident with their babies while fleeing. This is not the first time that the hospital has shared similar stories on social media, in consultation with patients, as they want to encourage Ukrainian families who may be afraid to ask for help with their sick children.
The Hungarian Reformed Church Aid has been working non-stop for three weeks (09:12)
Since the day the war broke out in Ukraine, the Hungarian Reformed Church Aid has been supporting refugees. In their Facebook post they write: on the first day only three of their staff went to the Western railway station of Budapest to help the refugees arriving by train with information, food or a word of comfort. Since then, the Hungarian Reformed Church Aid staff and volunteers have been deployed at ten supply points, in several locations, 24 hours a day. More than 140,000 people have been helped, almost 6,000 refugees have been helped to find accommodation and more than 57,000 people have been fed.
The Reformed Church in Transcarpathia has been helping refugees since the outbreak of the war (11:11)
The Transcarpathian Reformed community is helping them with the distribution of the aid they receive - Bishop Sándor Zán Fábián, told TV21 in Uzhhorod. He added: every day they send small and large consignments of goods across the border to the interior of Ukraine, where their contacts are waiting for the donations, often sent by train: diapers, baby food, and durable food.
The bishop also said that while they now have to help primarily those who remain in the war-torn areas, they are not abandoning their own elders and those in need - they continue to maintain a lively relationship with them.
Edited and translated by Anna Derencsényi, international officer of the Diaconia of RCH.