St. Augustine's Chapel underwent a large-scale restoration in the 13th district. The sacral building was established in 1950, after Cardinal József Mindszenty, a princely primate, appointed the Premontre monk Lajos Remig Szigeti in 1948 as chaplain of the St. Stephen's Basilica and entrusted him with organizing the clergy around the Pest bridgehead of Margaret Bridge.

The chapel was built in a coal cellar in the 14 Pozsonyi road(Photo: Mohai Balázs / MTI)

Remig Szigeti then bought the former coal cellar of the house at 14 Pozsonyi road, where the chapel of St. Augustine of the Csornai Premontrei Provincial Church was opened in the spring of 1950, which was supplied by the Premontrei even before the change of regime. The building was officially placed in the pastoral care of the parish of St. Stephen (St. Stephen's Basilica) in Budapest-Szentistvánváros at the end of the 2000s.

The church was blessed by Zoltán Márta Fazakas, abbot of Premontre in Csorna. In his homily, he spoke of the fact that during the decades of communism, people "could only profess their faith in secret." The chapel was like a catacomb. He believes history puts everyone’s faith to the test. After the change of regime, decades of freedom also brought challenges, as it was difficult to organize the care of the church after the death of the elderly fathers of Premontre.

The chapel has been completely renovated (Photo: Balázs Mohai / MTI)

Miklós Soltész, Secretary of State for Ecclesiastical and Ethnic Relations of the Prime Minister's Office, spoke at the event about the "witness" of the chapel in the cellar. It bears witness to the brown dictatorship, during which many thousands of people living in Lipótváros were destroyed. But it also bears witness to the Red Dictatorship, which allowed Catholic families moving to the neighborhood after the war to practice their religion only in an underground, catacomb-like church, he said.

Father Zoltán Fazakas Blessed the Church of the Premontrei abbot of Csornai (Photo: Balázs Mohai / MTI)

He also pointed out that members of the Premontre order, traditionally wearing white robes, which had disbanded in the 1950s, served in the church in black reverend until the change of regime, but with a "white Premontre heart." The state secretary added that the chapel also testifies to the present, as its renovation was "dreamed up" by György Snell, the auxiliary bishop of Esztergom-Budapest, who died in the coronavirus epidemic in February. He noted that after the burial of George Snell, he had agreed with the Abbot of Premontre that the renovation was a "matter of honor."

Gábor Mohos, auxiliary bishop of Esztergom and Budapest, parish priest of St. Stephen's Basilica, took part in the Mass.

Source: MTI

Cover photo: The Chapel of St. Augustine was opened in the spring of 1950, its renovation was timely (Photo: