Viktor Orban: Hungarians Can Only Survive as Christians
Hungarian Prime Minister, Viktor Orban spoke at a service dedicating a new church building for the Church of Unity in the Pestszenterzsebet District of Budapest on 26 September. Orban, considered a right-wing extremist by most Western media outlets, spoke to a packed congregation.
“Our history teaches us that Hungarians can only survive as Christians. A country locked within borders, but a spirit without borders. That’s Hungary. We’re not only a church-building nation, but in order to survive we must be a church-building nation. Each and every new church is a bastion in the struggle for the nation’s freedom and greatness.”
During an era where political leaders try to distance themselves from almost any expression of support for the Christian faith, Orban said that according to the Constitution of Hungary, called the Fundamental Law, that, “protection of the constitutional identity and Christian culture of Hungary is an obligation of every organ of the State.”
He continued, “A church is a sign that we believe in God and therefore look to the future with faith. Our churches are lighthouses: when a new one is built, the light of the world becomes brighter.”
“Today Western Europe is in a phase of losing its cultural and civilisational ground and balance. The great historical role and mission that Christian European civilisation fulfilled in the past five hundred years is withering and slowly evaporating. It has abandoned its sense of purpose, its cultural and spiritual heritage, it has simply thrown its future away. At times like this, I remember how many wanted to integrate us and how many times into a world where churches are built no longer, only mosques. The wider significance of today’s occasion truly unfolds in light of this historical situation.
“We don’t want to abandon the path we have trodden for a thousand years. We don’t want either to abandon or to drift off that path. This is possible if we realise that the state and church communities must cooperate. This cooperation is sanctified by our Fundamental Law. In a democracy resting on Christian foundations it is not only a task, but also the duty of the state to take responsibility for traditional communities, from the family through congregations to the nation. The Fundamental Law lays this down as follows: “The protection of the constitutional identity and Christian culture of Hungary shall be an obligation of every organ of the State.”
Alluding to the nation’s post World War II Communist past, Orban continued;
“Our history teaches us that Hungarians can only survive as Christians. A country locked within borders, but a spirit without borders. That’s Hungary. We’re not only a church-building nation, but in order to survive we must be a church-building nation. Each and every new church is a bastion in the struggle for the nation’s freedom and greatness. Therefore, Dear Reformed Brothers and Sisters, since 2010 in Hungary, in the territories of the Carpathian Basin inhabited by Hungarians we have built one hundred and fifty new Hungarian churches, and have refurbished more than three thousand churches in Hungary and beyond the borders.
“We are in the Church of Unity. Unity and community-building are the future. So during harvest time, what comes to mind is that the Reformed congregation of Szabó-telep has already pruned the vines so that there be even more grapes for the Hungarian people next year. May that be so. Soli Deo gloria!”