Memorable programs, memorable people

21 October 2018

One Thousand Sacred Years

Far away from worldly noise, in the depth of the dense Bakony forests, in a secluded valley, there is a special little village, Bakonybél. This is where János and I went to attend the festive mass organised for the one-thousandth anniversary of the founding of the monastery dedicated to Saint Mauritius. Time has come to a standstill among the white walls of the renovated church. The arboretum, rich with the colours of autumn surrounding the church, exuded wonderful harmony and peace. Nature and history are interwoven in Bakonybél. Members of the Benedictine community are engaged in growing fruits and herbs and in making relics by hand the same way as their peers did hundreds of years ago. It was inspiring to experience the profound faith, courage and hope, which characterised the Benedictine monks of Bakonybél, when in spite of the dissolutions and the destructions of wars, they restarted prayer, as well as work every time. The very existence of the one-thousand-year old monastery has confirmed my conviction that God’s creating power and protecting love are greater than the destructions of storms.