The Anglican Church in Hungary

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The Anglican Chaplaincy of St. Margaret of Scotland became a registered Church in Hungary in July 1995. However the history of Anglicanism goes back over 100 years in the Austro-Hungarian Empire with the Vienna Chaplaincy being established towards the end of last century. The first Anglican baptisms in Budapest that we know of were carried out in the early years of the present century. Before World War II, Anglicans worshipped in a church in the Castle District of Budapest loaned by the Roman Catholics.

This was destroyed in the battle for Budapest near the end of the war. In the difficult years following the war services were held at the British Legation, but with infrequent sacramental worship because of the necessity for priests to obtain the permission of the Hungarian Communist authorities. This was given only reluctantly on rare occasions, particularly in the years before 1956/57. By the 1980s there had been an easing and a priest came from Vienna each two months. In 1991 the Anglican community left the British Embassy premises and accepted the invitation of the Presbyterians to share their premises.

The Reverend Denis Moss from, New Zealand was appointed as the first full-time Anglican priest in March 1992. The arrangement with the Presbyterian church had never been entirely satisfactory because of the differing expectations of the two groups. The arrangement was terminated by the Presbyterians in 1996 and the Anglicans then accepted the invitation of Cardinal Laszlo Paskai to move to space in the new Roman Catholic Church in the XI. District, the Magyar Szentek Temploma. The Chaplaincy had commenced as an experiment with funding from the Diocese for only one year in 1991. However in November 1998 the Chaplaincy, having proved its viability over several years, was granted full Chaplaincy status with Fr. Moss as the first Chaplain.

Anglicanism exhibits a social outreach in response to the Gospel wherever it is established. This has been true in Hungary also with generous assistance to the community having been channeled through both Roman Catholic and Protestant charities. In the future a charitable wing of the Anglican Church will be founded in order to carry out more specific charitable work for the host Hungarian community.