Partner Church in Transylvania
Did you know the first Unitarian Churches were founded in Transylvania during the Protestant Reformation in the 16th century? These early Unitarians were Christians, but they rejected the concept of the trinity and instead believed that God is One. In the 20th century, Transylvania, which was part of Hungary, was annexed by Romania and remained “behind the Iron Curtain” until the fall of their dictator, Nicolae Ceausescu, in 1989. It was then that the UUA was able to re-establish contact with the area’s many Unitarian Churches. These churches had suffered greatly under communism, and so the UU Partner Church Council was formed in order to create partnerships between these legacy Transylvanian churches and UU Churches in the U.S. and Canada.
In 1998, we were partnered with a village church in Adamos, Transylvania. Their minister at the time, Rev. Csaba Mezei, was studying at a UU Seminary in Berkeley, California and before his return home he was able to spend several weeks with us in Franklin. During this a period of time, the congregation grew to know and love one another. Since then, several of us have traveled to Adamos to visit, provide support, and continue to maintain relationships with our UU partner church in Transylvania.
Our former Minister, Rev. Carol Rosine has been there twice–the last time accompanied by David Kassay, Harriet Fisher and Pat Slovacek. We have always been graciously welcomed into the homes of the Unitarians of Adamos, and are grateful for their generosity.
Over the years, many gifts of love and appreciation have been exchanged. The altar cloth in our sanctuary, plus other red embroidered cloths are beautiful gifts from the people of Adamos. We have provided funding for the renovation of a religious education space in their own parish house, as well as provided plenty of paper and art supplies for their children. A quilted banner representing our partnership was created by FUSF members Pat Slovacek and Judy Swaim, and given with love to the people of the Adamos Unitarian Church.
Rev. Csaba Mezei is currently serving the Second Unitarian Church in Kolozsvar, the historic capital of Transylvania. Rev. Alpar Fulop has been serving the Adamos congregation since 2002. We are proud of our partner church and their progress, and continue to support them here in Franklin.