Secular Hungary

Sunday, 20 December 2009

I get pics

Hungarians are also participating in the Afghanistan war. AP has a somewhat strange picture of one of them (I first got it from one of my Hungarian readers about a month ago, and now found it in this week's HVG): a Bible verse is pinned to his vehicle, Ezekiel 25:17: "And I will execute great vengeance upon them with furious rebukes; and they shall know that I [am] the LORD, when I shall lay my vengeance upon them."

Tuesday, 15 December 2009

Census questions

The next census in Hungary is due in 2011. The parliament decided not to include any questions regarding religious affiliation (as well as regarding special needs and the number of children), but the president, Mr László Sólyom returned the act to the parliament, which affirmed it.
As during WWII, the census was used for deportations, these data are considered very sensitive, and at the last census in 2001, it was not compulsory to answer. The big churches urged their followers to pledge their faith, while smaller ones and Jewish faith leaders dissuaded their followers. Over 10% of the population did not provide any data on their religious affiliation. In addition, contrary to their promise not to use these data in any way, the government later tried to reshape the distribution of state funding among churches according to the census figures, and leaders of bigger churches used the data to show their influence (for a discussion, see the FActs and figures page at the top of the blog!).

Tuesday, 1 December 2009

What does the church use your donations for?

To pay for abuse victims. At least this is what is going to happen with the buildings erected by the Hungarian community in Cleveland, USA. The bishop has already sold 24 churches, two of them built by Hungarian emigrants, and a third is to follow. 600 locals are fighting to keep the 150 year old church, they even turned to the head of the catholic church in Hungary, Péter Erdő, and to the Vatican, but without any results.