Hungary is a Christian country which believes that strengthening Christian life in the Holy Land is important, Dr Csaba Latorcai, Minister of State for Public Administration of the Ministry of Human Capacities said in his address which he delivered in the Holy Land, in the settlement of Mi’ilya at a memorial inauguration ceremony where local Christians commemorated the Hungarians who found a home there 800 years ago.

In his speech, Mr Latorcai highlighted that with the inauguration of the memorial, a special relationship is coming into being between Mi’ilya and Hungary which will build the future. It is built upon the message of the past because the residents of the settlement preserve the memory of the Hungarians who came and found a home here 800 years ago.

At the same time, he expressed hope that in the future more and more people from Mi’ilya will come to visit Hungary, whether as tourists or as students. “For our part, we will seek to ensure that Mi’ilya will be there on the map of our future pilgrims to the Holy Land,” the Minister of State of the Ministry of Human Capacities added.

He highlighted that our common faith ties us together, and creates a long bridge over the sea. The memory of this day should remain with us, with the knowledge that Budapest and Mi’ilya are not so far from one another, and this memorial which we have now inaugurated is about that.

The Minister of State further reassured the local Christian community that Hungary and its government regard the cause of helping our Christian brothers and sisters living in the cradle of Christianity as a priority, and they can always rely on our support.

The memorial also sponsored and erected by the Hungarian government in the settlement of Mi’ilya in the Holy Land pays tribute to the living tradition, respected by locals to this day, that many of the Hungarians who went there 800 years ago settled down and integrated into the local Christian community. Residents of the settlement underpin this tradition by using Hungarian-sounding names, and by having given the name ‘Balatu’un’ to an abandoned, dried-up lake located near the settlement.