Max Wolfhügel: On the Road to Emmaus
Under the restrictions imposed in Hungary since March, it has been prohibited in Hungary to hold events, yet religious communities have still been allowed to celebrate their services with their congregations, if they want to. We wanted to, and continued performing our services, together with our congregation, on our original schedule, every Thursday and Sunday. Even during the lockdown, practicing one’s religious life has been deemed a legitimate reason for free movement. We asked members and friends of our community to hold other congregations and the entire Christian Community in even more heightened awareness.
On Easter Sunday we celebrated the Act of Consecration of Man in our small chapel. The Easter joy of 35 people was enhanced by their interest for the new altarpiece that was painted by the artists Zoltán Döbröntei, Helga Hódosi and Viktor Kiss. We have been taking note of the effects the painting has had on our Act of Consecration of Man, and will discuss it together at a community day.
For a long time it remained unsettled when it would be possible to hold Confirmation this year, and whether we should confirm all 11 of the children who had been preparing at once, or in two separate groups. Through good collaboration they came to the decision together to hold the confirmation, all at once, on the Octave of Easter (19 April 2020), as was originally planned. You can see a photo of the confirmation group here.
The history from the beginnings to the present day
The first historic moments in the life of the movement for religious renewal in Hungary can be dated back as far as the 1960s. It was then that some Hungarian people maintaining relationships with East German families expressed the wish to have their children baptised in the way this sacrament is celebrated within the Christian Community. The first such baptism took place on 29 July 1965 and was celebrated by Gerhart Palmer, priest of the Christian Community.
Beginning from the 1970s priest Michael Kaiser serving in the Communities in Vienna and then in Graz put his huge efforts and enthusiasm to help establish new Christian Communities in Hungary, Slovenia and Croatia. Beginning from 1986 he held lectures interpreted into Hungarian, celebrated baptisms and children’s services in Hungarian, while confirmations and Acts of Consecration of Man were performed in the German language.
The first camp for children in the summer of 2000 hugely contributed to the enhancement of building our Christian Community. Under Michael Kaiser’s leadership there was a workgroup formed to study the sacraments and cosmic Christianity, while preparations started towards the foundation of a Hungarian congregation.
In 2002 all the Acts of Consecration of Man were already performed in Hungarian, and the number of those becoming interested in the movement was continually growing. The establishment of the Foundation of Christian Community that year served to provide a legal basis for the future work.
The ordination of the first Hungarian priest, Imre Silye took place in Stuttgart in 2007, and he was sent to St. Gallen, Switzerland. Simultaneously with his service there, in 2008 he together with Gwendolyn Fischer began to work as priest for the Hungarian Christian Community.
The next big step in the development of the community life was on 11 December, 2011 when on the occasion of the Foundation Event of the Christian Community in Hungary Vicke von Behr, Senior Executive of the Christian Community announced the appointment of Imre Silye and Gwendolyn Fischer as priests to serve in Hungary. The festive event of the foundation itself was held in the presence of 200 guests from all over the world between 17 and 19 February, 2012 in Dobogókő – a small mountain resort near the capital city of Budapest.
2016 saw the ordination of another Hungarian priest, Anna Bozókiné Tengely, who first was sent to serve in Wupperthal and Essen (Germany) till the middle of 2017. In September of that same year Gwendolyn Fischer retired and handed over the „torch” to Anna Bozókiné. Since then we have had two priests to serve in our native language. Simultaneously, Walther Giezendanner from Zurich became our regional executive.
Since the foundation of our Community we have been organising lectures, conversation groups and other programmes on a regular basis. In addition to the Acts of Consecration of Man held on Thursdays and Sundays, we also have an altar in Ispánk – a village in the west of Hungary, where services are held several times a year.
There are eight Gospel study groups spotted all over the country and conducted by our priests. Furthermore, we have a discussion group called „The Face of Peace”, where works by and about the Russian philosopher Vladimir Solovyov are read and discussed together with references by Rudolf Steiner to other significant Russian authors. In another conversation group called „Correlations of Fate” we read and discuss Rudolf Steiner’s „Manifestions of Karma”.
Every summer we have a camp for children preparing for confimation and also, a camp for families. The youngsters from our community regularly participate in the big event of the International Youth Meeting.
We keep contact with the Christian Communities not only in our region but all over Europe.
If you happen to be in Budapest, you are warmly welcome to our services, to our Community.
Acts of Consecration of Man
More frequently in festive seasons. See the Calendar for all dates and times: https://akeresztenykozosseg.org/esemenynaptar/, with “Emberszentelő szertartás” meaning Act of Consecration of Man and „Szertartás iskolás gyermekeknek” meaning Children’s Service.
A Keresztény Közösség
Nádor u. 34.