Living Bricks

2017. április 05., szerda

The Reformed University Chaplaincy of Szeged celebrates its tenth birthday and is organizing a meeting in the Carpathian Basin. The program started as a small Bible study but has now grown into a flourishing congregation. At the Starpoint Youth Festival two years ago the congregation held interactive events at a program venue related to the theme of growing up, and they will be an active presence at this year’s Starpoint in July. 

“The Reformed University Chaplaincy’s worship was like the stairway heading to the gate of heaven,” said Gábor Czagány. In this worship, the pastor expressed his gratitude towards the renewed congregation. The community of Szeged was reunited ten years ago when they moved to the Szeged-Honvéd Square congregation’s basement. Since then, Gábor Czagány has been leading the community. At first they functioned just as a Bible group with a couple of members, but then, due to an educational Alpha course, the headcount began to increase. Nowadays they have worship, organize different university courses and exhibitions, and also take part in organizing the Spacious Space ecumenical festival.

According to the pastor, the history of this congregation is all about construction.

“In the future the same process is waiting for them, because they can build a reformed campus in Szeged for three hundred million forints,” said the pastor on the anniversary occasion. Construction doesn’t work without bricks, though. “You are the living bricks from which we can build from,” said the pastor to the congregation members. In his opinion, the best birthday present from God that they got was the opportunity to build the campus. 

There are a couple of members in the congregation who aren’t university students any more, but they still visit the community. For example, Eszter Damásdi has been a part of the congregation for eight and a half years. She remembers the first Bible lesson, when she was a first-year chemistry student, and she said that it was good to see how many people came to the university congregation over the years. “I’m so grateful that I could see how our small congregation got bigger,” said Eszter. She lived in a different town for a short period of her life but moved back to Szeged because she wanted to be close to the university congregation. She is an active member and she leads the praise band.

“The university chaplaincy is important because it gives you experiences,” said Eliza Balázs, a lawyer who came to the anniversary occasion. She was an active member of the community from 2012 to 2014. She once went to the Alpha course and she liked it so much that she became a member.  “My life at that time wasn’t balanced at all, but the congregation helped me a lot,” confessed Eliza. 

When Szabolcs Bene, who was a first-year biology student, came to Szeged, his pastor suggested our community to him. In the congregation he immediately found new friends, among them some biology students that he got along well with and who he could speak about science and religion with as well. “It’s good to be here because we can praise the Lord and listen to the Word of God. It’s fantastic and fascinating at the same time,” said Szabolcs.

Article by Márk Hegedűs

Photos by Csilla Kapás

Originally published in the Reformatusok Lapja 2017/7.

Translated by Viktória Fülöp

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