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Passing on the Mantle

October 1, 2010

We enjoyed a quiet but note-worthy Worship Service this last Sunday, at the Kálvin Tér Reformed Church here.  This area’s Reformed Church District has begun a first-time system of “sabbatical leave” for any minister who has served a seven year period of time.  The minister can use that time for study, travel or rest.

Kálvin Tér has long been known as “the Bishop’s Church”, so serving there in any capacity has been an honor.  (At present, the Bishop of the Danube Basin actually has his own very fine church elsewhere.)  This Church also is where “our” Károli Gáspár University Theology student's progress to doing their practice preaching in a Thursday evening Worship Service throughout the school year.

But we were there for an additional reason:  it was our nephew, young Balázs, who would be filling this rather august pulpit for the three months that the Sr. Minister, the Rev. Pál László, would be away.  (To be appreciated is the fact that his wife, also a Rev. László, is to remain on duty at Kálvin Tér!)  We sat on each side of Balázs’s young wife.  Behind us was a visiting Pastor from our Calvin Synod Conference of the United Church of Christ (in the US), the Rev. László Kovacs, on his LAST trip to Hungary.  In the 1970’s, he’d filled in for me at my first congregation, the Gary, Indiana,  Hungarian Reformed Church, when new babies, etc., kept me out of the pulpit a few Sundays.  So, we were very happy to share this Sunday with him!

Though Viktória said Balázs was a bit nervous, he preached well, meaningfully, helpfully, with especially good exegesis, and the congregation listened, actively.  And of course, he was wearing Laslo’s ‘palást’ (clergy robe), as his sister wears another one of ours every Sunday in “her” church.  Balázs’s mother joined us afterward, from another part of the large sanctuary, along with Balázs and Viktória, and we all shed a few tears of relief and joy together.

It’s no small thing to launch a new young minister who is both our own nephew and one of our past students!  And it is a worthy thing to participate, even this minutely, in the beginnings of a new humane kindness for Hungarian Reformed clergy.  But certainly, it shows us that we are passing on –

Coralyn T. Medyesy, CGM missionary in Hungary

Laslo and Coralyn Medyesy are missionaries with the Reformed Church in Hungary, based in Budapest, Hungary.  Laslo serves as professor of theology in the Department of Theology of the Gaspar Karoli Reformed University in Budapest. Coralyn T. Medyesy serves as a teacher of Social Work and Diakonia at the Nagy Koros School.

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