Missionary David Fiala visited two schools in southern Hungary which are operated by the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Hungary. He shares this update.
David Fiala speaks with students at a Lutheran high school in Bonyhad, Hungary before singing Christmas carols together.
“In Bonyhad, Hungary, there are over 600 students attending a bilingual boarding high school. This school was founded over 200 years ago and has a long history of Lutheran education! This was interrupted by the era following World War II. After the fall of the Communist regime in 1989, the church regained its confiscated buildings and continued their tradition of Christian education. The campus has an all-weather track, the oldest gymnasium in the county, an indoor field house, a dormitory for 300 students, a number of outbuildings containing classrooms and living quarters, a Japanese Garden and of course, the original school building.
“While visiting, I was able to meet with half the student body over the course of four class periods. During this time, the groups of students learned new Christmas carols, including “Where Shepherds Lately Knelt” and “A Stable Lamp is Lighted.” Using the lyrics of the carols as a springboard, I delivered Gospel presentations to the students, many of whom were non-Christians.
“The administration of the school is interested in hosting an English language teacher and GEO* missionary (who could also coach track, baseball, soccer or basketball) at the school, as well as summer mission events that could use the school’s amazing athletic facilities. They are interested in Track and Field, especially the Pole Vault! The math department of the school is one of the most highly regarded and prestigious in Hungary.
“In its 12 year history, the Lutheran elementary school in Szarvas, Hungary, has grown by leaps and bounds, so much, in fact, that they have the growing pains of needing a new building in which to start a Lutheran High School! Thankfully, the buildings that were taken from them by the communists have been returned and plans are underway for renovations and the establishment of a high school program. The city has recognized the quality of the education received by students of the Lutheran school and are supportive of the expansion of their educational ministry. In addition to the elementary school of 350 students, there is a preschool and kindergarten of 150 students and a retirement half-day care facility for the elderly that are also connected to the ministry and outreach of the church in the community.”