Revolution: Six decades of the Hungarian Revolution
(picture courtesy: Zalan Kemeny)
- the community will commemorate the Day on October 23
60 years ago Hungarians started an uprising against the communist dictatorship forced on Hungary by the Russian troops who "liberated" Hungary in the 2nd World War.
The freedom fighters failed in the revolt, but ever since Hungary gained back its independence in 1989 and announced the new republic on the anniversary day of October 23, we are free to celebrate the remembrance of the unsuccessful uprising and all the victims of fighting and the reprisals afterwards.
The Hungarian Community of New Zealand is preparing to celebrate the 60th anniversary in the major cities. The official celebration is going to take place in Wellington, but The Hungarian Club of Christchurch will also host one. Hungarians are thankful to the people in New Zealand who helped them in difficult times.
The local Hungarian community grew significantly after the 1956 events, when New Zealand agreed to accept and shelter 1000 Hungarian refugees. Many of them worked hard to become an esteemed part of the society, and they founded the Hungarian Club in New Brighton in 1975. How Hungarians got settled is described by the recently published set of novels in the book of Frankie McMillan „My mother and the Hungarians”.
This year the Hungarians of Christchurch celebrate together with Hungarian Ambassador Dr Laszlo Zsolt Szabo, and the recently re-elected Mayor of CHCH, Lianne Dalziel. First there is going to be an interdenominational mass in the St Mary’s Catholic Church, then the wooden memorial poles called „Kopjafa” will be unveiled. Beyond the traditional carving, two words (Friendship on the female memorial pole and Freedom on the male memorial pole) will be presented in 4 languages: Hungarian, ancient Szekler script, Maori and English. It is being done by local Hungarian craftsmen who came to Christchurch for the rebuild.
After the inauguration of an exhibition, speeches and poems, a hearty Hungarian lunch will be served to the celebrating parties, and a commemorating movie, Children of Glory will be screened.
- Zalan Kemeny
Editor, Óceánparti hírek - a monthly newsetter brought out by the Hungarian Club of Christchurch
From Budapest, Zalan has master in economics and international relations. He has worked in a multinaitonal semiconductor company for nine years before he decided to come to Christchurch for a six-month scholarship, supporting the local Hungarian community. He is fond of a rare sport called tamburello and also likes travelling, and outdoor activities.