The Debate of the Romanian Concordat from the Perspective of Hungarian Catholics in the Twenties of the 20th Century
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Due to the territorial redistributions following WW1, Transylvania became a part of Romania. Most of its population were Hungarian-speaking Catholics. For the Romanian state, the conclusive resolution of their issues was the agreement with the Holy See in Rome. On the one hand, the Catholics obliged to the standpoint of Rome, on the other hand, due to the international situation, Romania could not afford to avoid an official agreement with the Pope in the case of Hungarian Catholics, in order to prevent accusations of anti-religiousness. The official diplomatic communication between Bucharest and the Vatican began in 1919 and concordat negotiations began in 1920. It was signed on 10 May 1927 and was only ratified by the Romanian parliament on 13 June 1929. During this long process, the Romanian legislation had several important events that affected the situation of the churches and thus that of the minority society. These are the first to be discussed in the paper. Afterwards, we briefly address the principles and practice of the contemporary concordat policy of the Holy See. Each involved party (Roman Catholic Hungarian minority, Orthodox Romanians, the Romanian government and Eastern Catholic Romanians) reacted to leaked negotiation details differently. This is presented in the next section. In the last part of the paper, we examine the main points, aftermath and evaluation of the final and accepted concordat, from the viewpoint of the Catholic Hungarians.
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