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György Udvardy: Let us believe that God has taken responsibility for us

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It is not expected that everyone will experience the holiday in the same way; Every day is important, but during the Advent period we get special attention to notice the needs of those around us as well - György Udvardy, the bishop of the Diocese of Pécs, drew attention to Hirado.hu in a festive interview on the occasion of the first Sunday of Advent.

Bishop György Udvardy, leader of the Diocese of Pécs, at his inauguration in the Basilica of Pécs (MTI photo: Ferenc Kálmándy)

- On the first Sunday of Advent, what should we think about when lighting candles, what does this year's Advent call for?

“The great gift of life is that we can experience the wait from time to time. This experience is almost always a part of our lives, but also in the time of Advent, to experience the joy of waiting in a celebratory way. Advent is shorter this year - due to the liturgical timetable - but that does not mean that its content is lacking in anything. Advent is also called the time of waiting, but if we do, we also need to say what we are waiting for. We can wait for the renewal of our experiences and childhood experiences, for the creation of some pleasant experience or for the renewal of some kind of relationship. These can all be very important. But we are actually watching over this period to see who is coming to us, who is waiting for us to arrive. It's not necessarily about ourselves. After all, we want to prepare ourselves to receive the newcomer, but the real question is: who is the newcomer? Who is the Son of God? What does it mean that God in His Son enters the life of man? What is he like, how do we look at him? The Merciful Father enters the life of man as the merciful Son, assumes our destiny, experiences all areas of our humanity, considers himself his own - and at the same time proves to be the obedient son of a loving God. That is why he can give hope, good news, renewal, confidence in the future. This year's Advent also calls us to this.

- The Christmas period has a different meaning and significance for each person, it may also depend on the weights on the person's soul and the difficulties affecting his or her daily life. What thoughts should Adventist experience for those who feel balanced and satisfied, and how do those who need care, happiness, materiality, or even sadness — in a word, feel distant care? 

- We experience in every part of our lives that an event or holiday - be it a state, national or church holiday - becomes a holiday on a personal level. There may be significant differences in this. Someone who thinks about love, for example, can be grateful to their parents, siblings, family, friends because they have received a lot of love. Another may think of love in the same way that he does not have. Again, how fragile is love when you want to give or when you receive it from others. In the same way, we experience a different way of celebrating the holiday, even in terms of financial circumstances. It can be a lot of pain in addition to a lot of pleasure. It is in this diversity that the diversity of our everyday lives is reflected. Christmas and the expectations associated with it amplify not only the diversity of our everyday lives, but also their hardships. The fact that there are those who live their lives in peace is dreaded by the insecurity of their neighbor. While someone feels financially secure, others are afraid of losing their home or deteriorating their health. Every day is important, but during this period, we get special attention to notice the needs of those around us. It is never expected that everyone will experience the holiday in the same way. Are our expectations related to Christmas, life and the holidays realistic? I don't think so. Just as society often thinks of joy superficially, without foundation and roots, so for many people, celebration does not mean the upliftment of the soul, but the intensification of the contradictions and pains that already exist. That is why we await the arrival of the Son of the merciful, that mercy may cure this tension, this difference.

Illustration of our image (MTI photo: Szilárd Koszticsák)

- The Christmas season is woven more and more year by year by the "commercialization": many people - with a little exaggeration - are preparing for Christmas in shopping malls. Even if for many it does not mean that the holiday is empty, the question must be asked: are we on the right track to understanding and living Christmas?

- Our feasts have been taken over and dominated for many centuries by trade and social forms that do not necessarily preserve the spiritual content of the holiday. Many times, the demands are shaped by these empty expectations that have no community to the essence of the holiday. All parents and children are at great risk in giving gifts and pleasures. Christmas helps, though, most notably here in action, the idea of ​​secularization that I have joy because I have met the Son of God, who has become man for me, who has communion with me and takes responsibility for me. In this kind of festive radical experience, there is a place for suffering, for limitations, for solidarity, for caring.

"Where is the line between true and false Advent?" It is a pity to argue that the atmosphere of the festive landing fairs, for example, is a pleasant accompaniment to Advent. 

- We see a wide variety of Advent preparations: a great many demanding, valuable ways to prepare for Advent that help both the individual, the family, and the children prepare. I would like to emphasize this together with my colleagues, so our event called Advent in Pécs has been offering various communities, schools, educational institutions and associations in the city and the diocese the opportunity to present the treasures and gifts they have. In doing so, they will bring joy to others, their parents, relatives, and other members of the diocese, and help us to present cultured, beautiful, artistically performed pieces and musicals to experience Advent and celebrate Christmas.

Illustration of our picture (MTI-photo: Tamás Sóki)

“As a diocesan leader, his advent is obviously about a lot more than the majority. Does the bishop's work fit in the wait?

- Like others, I live a busy and busy time in everyday life. The big task is how we can rethink the principle that governs our daily activities: Advent helps us with that too. The traditional customs of Advent, such as the celebration of Rorathe, the reflection on the scriptures that anticipate the coming of the Lord, or the more zealous self-denial, help us to see my duties much more clearly, realistically, and expediently in the light of the coming Son of God. able to convert. Pope Francis The joy of the gospel In his apostolic exhortation, he says, the joy of the gospel rewrites our calendar, our calendar, the tasks in it — that should be the only organizing principle.

- What is your personal message to the Hungarians, those who, even in this period, have perhaps the last link to their Hungarianness beyond the border is faith, belonging to the church?

- A liturgical feast has an eternal message every year, but it can also have a current message due to the rapid change in circumstances. From time to time, desires, plans and common tasks can stand out in our Hungarian community, which can create a common expectation in us. I formulate it as a task, a message, a goal for myself, and I would like to give this as a gift to my Hungarian brothers and sisters to live anywhere in the world: believe that God has taken responsibility for us and has come into communion with us. We need to renew this community and this responsibility in our daily decisions in order for man to have a life and have that life abundant.

Source: hirado.hu, Mészáros

Featured image: Hirmagazin.eu

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