Brexit Inspires Solidarity

2020. január 31., péntek

31st January 2020 marks the date when the UK leaves the EU. RCH joins churches and ecumenical organisations stating that church unity, fellowship and mutual solidarity remains.

“At 11pm GMT on Friday the 31st of January 2020, the United Kingdom will no longer be a member of the European Union. The UK is leaving the EU, but we are not leaving Europe”, reads in the open letter from Churches in Britain to Churches in member states of the European Union, including RCH. As a first sign of solidarity and remaining commitment to deepening our fellowship and strengthening our cooperation, we published the letter in Hungarian and called our churches in and around Hungary to pray for the communities in the UK and discern ways of “how we can work together to offer hope and reconciliation to all our communities as we seek to follow Jesus in our everyday living.”

“Brexit obviously won't affect our historic ties and vital relationship. Your letter is both a reminder and encouragement for us to continue proving mutual solidarity and keep our joint commitment for all those values and principles we share based on the Gospel, and seek to jointly implement for the sake of our citizens” – reacted ecumenical officer Balázs Ódor in behalf of RCH. The diminishing of political ties and accountability will not affect or impede our commitment to our partners in other parts of Europe.

RCH also welcomed the message and answered the request of the leadership of WCRC Europe positively. “The Steering Committee is in solidarity with our friends in the UK who feel that a cherished part of their identity – as citizens of the European Union – is being taken from them. At the same time, the Steering Committee welcomes the aforementioned message as sign of lasting friendship, and is encouraging Member Churches to consider sharing the letter with their congregations so that it might be introduced to our sister and brothers throughout the European Union. Indeed, Brexit might be a temporary arrangement, and in Christ we are much more than various communities who could be separated by state borders” – formulated on behalf of WCRC Europe János Antal, secretary of the Steering Committee.

Similarly, RCH embraced wholeheartedly the invitation of the Presidium of the Conference of European Churches to intensify the joint commitment of European churches towards reconciliation, cooperation and solidarity in Europe as Brexit “does not change the mutual ecumenical commitment of European churches that grew in the last century under different political contexts.”

Based on our longstanding and revitalised links with churches in the UK, “we give thanks to God for the relationship and look forward to the future, in Christian solidarity, as we seek to walk together in the footsteps of Christ and continue to pray for each other”, as we stated in the Memorandum of Commitment which RCH signed with the Church of Scotland back in 2015.

The words of Bishop Dr. István Szabó, President of the Synod of RCH, which he shared at the occasion of the signature of the agreement, remain valid. Just like the previous memorandum, the fact that UK is leaving the EU, is a “reminder and motivation for our commitment. It is namely, to express the will and desire to continue the longstanding friendship between the churches and to strengthen the links on various levels of church life”.

Read statements and the Open Letter of UK Church leaders in a variaty of languages, including Hungarian.

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Reformed Church in Hungary

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We encourage you to read our  former GM intern Kearstin Bailey's blog about her time, spent in Hungary.