Hungarian Greek Catholic Church

The Hungarian Greek Catholic Church (Hungarian: Magyar görögkatolikus egyház) or Hungarian Byzantine Catholic Church is a Metropolitan sui iuris ("autonomous") Eastern Catholic particular Church in full communion with the Catholic Church. It is headquartered in Debrecen.[1] Its liturgical rite is the Byzantine Rite in Hungarian.

Hungarian Greek Catholic Church
Greek Catholic Cathedral Hajdudorog
ClassificationEastern Catholic
ArchbishopMetropolitan Péter Fülöp Kocsis
AssociationsCongregation for the Oriental Churches
LiturgyByzantine Rite
HeadquartersDebrecen, Hungary[1]
Origin18 June 1912
Separated fromEastern Orthodox Church
Merger ofCatholic Church
Hungarian Greek Catholic Church administrative divisions
Hungarian Greek Catholic Church administrative divisions


Hungary's Greek Catholics were originally concentrated in what is now northeastern Hungary. This region was historically inhabited by Greek rite Christians from the Carpathian Mountains (Ruthenians and Romanians). Serbs fleeing the Turkish advance arrived later in what was then Hungary, but most stayed in the area that is now part of Serbia. Later still, when the Turks were driven back from Vienna in 1683 and from Buda and central Hungary in 1686, Ruthenians and Slovaks settled in the abandoned lands of Hungary. They were cared for by the Ruthenian Byzantine Rite Eparchy of Mukacheve (Hungarian: Munkács). In the 17-18th centuries, during the conflict with Protestants, many Hungarians joined the Greek Catholic Church, and so adopted the Byzantine Rite rather than the Latin, which resulted in a considerable increase in their number.[3]

Perhaps largely because of this last element, Byzantine Hungarians began to use the Hungarian language in their liturgy. A translation of the Liturgy of Saint John Chrysostom for private study was published in 1795. A book containing the parts of the liturgy that the people sing appeared in 1862. Representatives of 58 Hungarian-speaking parishes met in 1868 and set up an organization to promote the liturgical use of the Hungarian language and the establishment of a separate eparchy. 1882 saw the publication, without formal ecclesiastical approval, of a Hungarian translation of the Liturgy of Saint John Chrysostom for actual use, which was soon followed by Hungarian translations of other liturgical texts.

Sui iuris

Finally, on 8 June 1912, Pope Pius X established the Eparchy of Hajdúdorog[4][5] for the 162 Hungarian-speaking Greek Catholic parishes. He limited the use of Hungarian to non-liturgical functions, requiring the clergy to use Greek in the liturgy, but granted an interval of three years for the change of language to be effected. Because of the outbreak of the First World War, this interval was prolonged indefinitely, and use of Hungarian has continued.

The change of national frontiers after the First World War led to the reduction of the territory of the Eparchy of Hajdúdorog from the 168 parishes to which it had grown to only 90. Within Hungary there were also 21 parishes of the Eparchy of Prešov and one of the Eparchy of Mukačevo. On 4 June 1924, these were brought together as the new Exarchate of Miskolc,[6][gci 1] at first - because at that time they still used Church Slavonic in the liturgy - classified as Ruthenian, but now considered part of the Hungarian Greek Catholic Church.

The territory of the eparchy at first corresponded to that of the Latin Archdiocese of Eger (eastern Hungary) and Budapest. But its jurisdiction was extended on 17 July 1980 to the whole of Hungary.

On 20 March 2015, Pope Francis elevated the Hungarian Church to a Metropolitanate with Hajdúdorog as its Metropolitan See, naming Bishop Fülöp Kocsis as its metropolitan. He also raised the Apostolic Exarchate of Miskolc to the status of an Eparchy, to be headed by Bishop Atanáz Orosz. Finally he erected the Eparchy of Nyiregyhaza from territory previously within the See of Hajdúdorog. The two eparchies are suffragans of the Hajdúdorog see.[7]

A small number of Hungarian Greek Catholics have emigrated to North America, where their few parishes are aggregated, in the United States of America, to the Ruthenian Byzantine Metropolia, and, in Canada, to the Ukrainian eparchies.[8]


The Church comprises only a single ecclesiastical province, which consists of the Metropolitan Archeparchy (Archdiocese) and two suffragan Eparchies (dioceses):

Its bishops are members of the (mainly Latin) episcopal conference of Hungary.


  1. ^ a b "Ferenc pápa megalapította a Hajdúdorogi Metropóliát" (in Hungarian). Hungarian Catholic Church website. 20 March 2015. Retrieved 21 March 2015.
  2. ^ a b c Roberson, Ronald G. "The Eastern Catholic Churches 2014" (PDF). Eastern Catholic Churches Statistics. Catholic Near East Welfare Association. Retrieved 21 March 2015.
  3. ^ Magyar Katolikus Lexikon (Hungarian Catholic Lexicon): Görögkatolikusok (Greek Catholics) [1]
  4. ^ Cheney, David M. "Diocese of Hajdúdorog". All Dioceses. Retrieved 10 January 2012.
  5. ^ "Diocese of Hajdúdorog". Catholic Dioceses in the World. Retrieved 10 January 2012.
  6. ^ Cheney, David M. "Apostolic Exarchate of Miskolc". All Dioceses. Retrieved 10 January 2012.
  7. ^
  8. ^ Roberson, Ronald G. "The Hungarian Catholic Church. Page 2". Eastern Catholic Churches. Catholic Near East Welfare Association. Retrieved 28 December 2011.
  1. ^ "Apostolic Exarchate of Miskolc". Catholic Dioceses in the World. GCatholic. Retrieved 10 January 2012.

External links

Coordinates: 47°57′19″N 21°42′45″E / 47.9554°N 21.7124°E

Assumption Cathedral, Miskolc

The Assumption Cathedral (Hungarian: Nagyboldogasszony püspöki székesegyház) also called Miskolc Cathedral is the name given to a Catholic religious building located in the city of Miskolc, the fourth largest city in the European country of Hungary. Work on the construction of the church began in 1902 and ended in 1912. In 1924 the church was elevated to cathedral.

The temple follows the Hungarian or the Byzantine rite and serves as the cathedral of the Eparchy of Miskolc (Eparchia Miskolcensis or Miskolci Egyházmegye) that got its current status by decision of Pope Francis in March 2015 as part of the reorganization of the Greek Catholic Hungarian Church, one of the eastern churches in full communion with the Pope in Rome.The construction style has pre-modern and neo-Gothic elements.

Atanáz Orosz

Bishop Atanáz László Orosz (born 11 May 1960 in Nyíregyháza, Hungary) is a Hungarian Greek Catholic hierarch as the Eparchial Bishop of the new elevated Hungarian Catholic Eparchy of Miskolc since 20 March 2015 and was the Titular Bishop of Panium and Apostolic Exarch of Apostolic Exarchate of Miskolc from 5 March 2011 until 20 March 2015. Also he served as the Apostolic Administrator of the new created Hungarian Catholic Eparchy of Nyíregyháza from 20 March 2015 until 31 October 2015.

Canon law

Canon law (from Greek kanon, a 'straight measuring rod, ruler') is a set of ordinances and regulations made by ecclesiastical authority (Church leadership), for the government of a Christian organization or church and its members. It is the internal ecclesiastical law, or operational policy, governing the Catholic Church (both the Latin Church and the Eastern Catholic Churches), the Eastern Orthodox and Oriental Orthodox churches, and the individual national churches within the Anglican Communion. The way that such church law is legislated, interpreted and at times adjudicated varies widely among these three bodies of churches. In all three traditions, a canon was originally a rule adopted by a church council; these canons formed the foundation of canon law.

Cathedral of Hajdúdorog

The Cathedral of Hajdúdorog, officially Greek Catholic Cathedral of the Presentation of Mary in Hajdúdorog (Hungarian: Hajdúdorogi Istenszülő Bevezetése a Templomba Székesegyház) is the cathedral of the Archeparchy of Hajdúdorog, Hungary. This status ranks the cathedral among the most important buildings of the Hungarian Greek Catholic Church. The origins of the current cathedral reaches back to 1312, when historical notes mention that a church existed in the medieval settlement of Dorogegyháza. However, the present building has 17th century foundations, and it went through several building extensions and renovations during its history. The latest restoration were completed in 2006.Pope Pius X raised the church to the rank of a cathedral in 1912 when he erected the Diocese of Hajdúdorog with the papal bull Christifideles Graeci. The interior reflects the traditions of the Greek Catholic liturgy and architecture. The most spectacular sign of it is the 200 years old iconostasis. The 11 meters (36 feet) tall wall of icons separates the three naves and the altar. The iconostasis contains 54 holy images and it is considered as one of the most important iconostasis in Hungary.

More than 80% of the inhabitants of Hajdúdorog are Greek Catholic thus the cathedral is a central scene for the everyday life of the town, especially during major religious feast days. The most visited events of the cathedral are the Christmas procession and the traditional Easter services when a local bread, the pászka is sanctified.

Catholic Church in Hungary

The Catholic Church in Hungary (Hungarian: Magyar Katolikus Egyház) is part of the worldwide Catholic Church, under the spiritual leadership of the Pope in Rome.

There are around 3.842 million Catholics in Hungary — or 39% of the population (2011 census). The country is divided into 12 dioceses including 4 archdioceses. In addition, there is a territorial abbey and a separate sui juris particular Church for those who adhere to the Byzantine Rite known as the Hungarian Greek Catholic Church.

The Church has been in decline in recent decades in Hungary; although the decline has not been as dramatic as in the Czech Republic, it is nowadays only a plurality (the largest minority) in the country.

Full communion

Full communion is a communion or relationship of full understanding among different Christian denominations that share certain essential principles of Christian theology. Views vary among denominations on exactly what constitutes full communion, but typically when two or more denominations are in full communion it enables services and celebrations, such as the Eucharist, to be shared among congregants or clergy of any of them with the full approval of each.

Greek Catholic Church

The Greek Catholic Church refers to a number of Eastern Catholic Churches following the Byzantine (Greek) liturgy, considered collectively or individually.

The terms Greek Catholic, Greek-Catholic, Greek Catholic church and Greek-Catholic Church may refer to:

Individually, any 14 of the 23 Eastern Catholic Churches which use the Byzantine rite, a.k.a. Greek Rite:

the Albanian Greek Catholic Church

the Belarusian Greek Catholic Church

the Bulgarian Greek Catholic Church

the Greek Catholic Church of Croatia and Serbia

the Greek Byzantine Catholic Church, in Greece and Turkey

the Hungarian Greek Catholic Church

the Italo-Albanian Catholic Church

the Macedonian Greek Catholic Church

the Melkite Greek Catholic Church

the Romanian Greek Catholic Church (officially the Romanian Church United with Rome, Greek-Catholic)

the Russian Greek Catholic Church

the Ruthenian Greek Catholic Church

the Slovak Greek Catholic Church

the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church

Any other group of Eastern Catholics following the Byzantine rite:

the Georgian Byzantine-Rite Catholics

an Ordinariate for Eastern Catholic faithful without proper ordinary, in 6 countries

The Catholic Church in Greece, a Roman Catholic hierarchy following the Latin rite in the country of Greece

Greek Catholic Eparchy of Mukachevo

The Greek Catholic Eparchy of Mukachevo is an eparchy (diocese) associated with the Ruthenian Greek Catholic Church under an unidentified status and territory located in the west of Ukraine, roughly equivalent with Zakarpatska Oblast. The eparchy was created by the Pope Clement XIV in 1771.

The eparchy is in full communion with the Roman Catholic Church. Its parishes observe the Byzantine Rite which is also celebrated by the majority of Orthodox Christians, and as provided for in the original terms of the Union of Uzhhorod.

The eparchy is a mother eparchy of at least three modern metropoles, i.e., the Slovak Greek Catholic Church, the Romanian Greek Catholic Church, and the Hungarian Greek Catholic Church, as well as the Ruthenian Greek Catholic Church in the United States.


Hajdúdorog (Hungarian: [ˈhɒjduːdoroɡ] (listen)) is a town in Hajdú-Bihar county, in the Northern Great Plain region of eastern Hungary. In 2001, 80.9% of the population of Hajdúdorog was Greek Catholic.

It is located at lat 47° 48 ' 59 21 and lon ° 29 ' 59 47.81647. Hajdúdorog had a population of 8797 in 2014 (down from 8888 in 2006), with a population density of 89,97 people per km². The city is 130 m above sea level and the district area is 100.65 km².

Hungarian Catholic Archeparchy of Hajdúdorog

The Hungarian (Greek) Catholic Archeparchy of Hajdúdorog (Latin: Archidioecesis Haidudoroghensis) is a Metropolitan Archeparchy (Eastern Catholic Archdiocese) of the Hungarian Greek Catholic Church.

Its Metropolitan archbishop is the head of the Hungarian Greek Catholic Church. The Metropolitanate is a sui iuris Eastern particular Church in full union with the Catholic Church, which uses the Byzantine Rite in Hungarian language, covering the entire area of Hungary.

The archiepiscopal cathedral is located in the city of Hajdúdorog, whereas the seat of the metropolitanate is in Debrecen according to the founding bull.

Hungarian Catholic Eparchy of Miskolc

The Hungarian (Greek) Catholic Eparchy of Miskolc is an eparchy (Eastern Catholic diocese) of the Hungarian Greek Catholic Church (Latin Miskolcensis), a Metropolitan particular church sui juris which uses the Byzantine Rite in the Hungarian language.

It is a suffragan of the Hungarian Catholic Archeparchy of Hajdúdorog, a Metropolitanate sui juris and the Hungarian Catholics' only province, entirely in Hungary and depending on the Roman Congregation for the Oriental Churches.

Its cathedral episcopal see is Nagyboldogasszony püspöki székesegyház, in Miskolc, in Borsod-Abaúj-Zemplén (northeastern Hungary).

Hungarian Catholic Eparchy of Nyíregyháza

The Hungarian (Greek) Catholic Eparchy of Nyíregyháza is an eparchy (diocese) of the Hungarian Greek Catholic Church, an Eastern Catholic church which uses the Byzantine Rite in the Hungarian language.

It has its cathedral episcopal see, Szent Miklós Görögkatolikus székesegyház, in Nyíregyháza (Hungary). It is a suffragan of the Hungarian Catholic Archeparchy of Hajdúdorog, a Metropolitanate sui juris and the Hungarian Catholics' only province.

List of Catholic dioceses in Hungary

The Roman Catholic Church in Hungary is composed of:

A Latin hierarchy, comprising

four ecclesiastical provinces, comprising their Metropolitan archdioceses and in total nine suffragan dioceses

the exempt Military Ordinariate

the exempt Territorial Archabbey of Pannonhalma.

The overlapping proper province of the Hungarian Greek Catholic Church (Eastern Catholic sui iuris, Byzantine Rite in Hungarian)There is also an Apostolic nunciature, the papal diplomatic representation in Hungary.


Máriapócs is a small town in Szabolcs-Szatmár-Bereg county, in the Northern Great Plain region of eastern Hungary. It lies near Nyíregyháza. It is an important place for pilgrimage. It has a Byzantine Catholic church, which houses the Weeping Madonna, an enormous ornate iconostasis that now takes pride of place above the altar. This icon is not the original, but an 18th-century copy. The original one is kept in St. Stephen's Cathedral in Vienna.

Phos Hilaron

Phos Hilaron (Ancient Greek: Φῶς Ἱλαρόν, translit. Fόs Ilarόn) is an ancient Christian hymn originally written in Koine Greek. Often referred to by its Latin title Lumen Hilare, it has been translated into English as O Gladsome Light. It is the earliest known Christian hymn recorded outside of the Bible that is still in use today. The hymn is part of vespers in the Byzantine Rite, and also included in some modern Anglican and Lutheran liturgies.

Péter Fülöp Kocsis

Péter Fülöp Kocsis (born 13 January 1963 in Szeged, Hungary) is a Hungarian Greek Catholic archbishop. He is as metropolitan archbishop of the Archeparchy of Hajdúdorog, the head of the Hungarian Greek Catholic Church.

Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Esztergom-Budapest

The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Esztergom-Budapest (Latin: Archidioecesis Strigoniensis–Budapestinensis) is the primatial seat of the Roman Catholic Church in Hungary and the Metropolitan of one of its four Latin rite ecclesiastical provinces.

The Metropolitan archbishopric retains the title of Primate, which gives this see precedence over all other Latin Hungarian dioceses, including the fellow Metropolitan Archbishops of Eger, Kalocsa–Kecskemét and Veszprém, but the incumbent may be individually (and temporarily) outranked if one of them holds a (higher) cardinalate. Its current Archbishop is Péter Erdő.

Sui iuris

Sui iuris, also spelled as sui juris ( or ), is a Latin phrase that literally means "of one's own right". It is used in both civil law and canon law by the Catholic Church. The term church sui iuris is used in the Catholic Code of Canons of the Oriental Churches (CCEO) to denote the autonomous churches in Catholic communion:

A church sui iuris is "a community of the Christian faithful, which is joined together by a hierarchy according to the norm of law and which is expressly or tacitly recognized as sui iuris by the supreme authority of the Church" (CCEO.27). The term sui iuris is an innovation of the CCEO, and it denotes the relative autonomy of the oriental Catholic Churches. This canonical term, pregnant with many juridical nuances, indicates the God-given mission of the Oriental Catholic Churches to keep up their patrimonial autonomous nature. And the autonomy of these churches is relative in the sense that it is under the supreme authority of the Roman Pontiff.

—Fr. Thomas Kuzhinapurath, Salvific Law, 1998

Ábel Szocska

Bishop Ábel Antal Szocska, O.S.B.M. (Ukrainian: Авель Сочка; born 21 September 1972) is a Hungarian Greek Catholic hierarch. He is serving as the first Eparchial Bishop of the Hungarian Catholic Eparchy of Nyíregyháza from 31 October 2015 (until 7 April 2018 he was an Apostolic Administrator of the same Eparchy).

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