Debrecen and the Movement of Reformation

2017. január 20., péntek

In celebration of the 500th anniversary of the Reformation, Debrecen has been selected as a City of the Reformation. Debrecen’s rich connections to the Reformation date back to the 1520’s and continue to inform Hungarian reformed life today. A new website created by the RCH aims to showcase the historic roots of the Reformation in Debrecen through an interactive map of the city and a Reformation Walking Tour.

Debrecen is often referred to as “the Hungarian Geneva” or “the Calvinist Rome” because of its strong links to the Reformed Church. 


The teachings of Reformation became widespread in the Hungarian Kingdom during the decades of crisis that followed the Battle of Mohács (1526). After the initial conversion of German-speaking towns in Northern Hungary and Transylvania, the new movement became more and more popular in the Hungarian-speaking areas, too. The strengthening of Reformation in Debrecen dates back to the 1550s and ’60s, with such leading figures as Márton Sánta Kálmáncsehi and Péter Juhász Melius. 

The 1567 synod of Debrecen played a crucial role in the stabilization of the Reformed Church. The representatives of the dioceses rejected the teachings of Antitrinitarianism in two confessions written in Latin and Hungarian, endorsed the Second Helvetic Confession, and laid down the basic rules, principles and regulations of the new church. 

 In the 16th and 17th century, the printing shop run by the city and the Reformed Church together produced the highest number of publications written in Hungarian, whose majority served the spiritual needs of the Reformed Church through the printing of Bibles, hymn-books, prayer books, school textbooks, and catechisms.

From the Age of Reformation, Debrecen became the spiritual and intellectual center of Hungarian Protestantism and the Reformation’s palpable influence is commemorated by several spectacular sites of memory.

Join us in exploring the rich connections between the Reformation and the city of Debrecen through an interactive map of the city, a Reformation walking tour, and timely articles detailing the history of the city.

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Reformed Church in Hungary

Address: H-1146 Budapest, Abonyi utca 21.   

PO Box: 1140 Budapest 70, Pf. 5

Phone/Fax: + 36 1 460 0708 


Our church through American eyes

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