B bábi, Tibor

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Bertalan, Imre (Emeric) (Nyírtass, 1918 - Schenectady, N.Y. USA, 10 July 2008) – Minister and Dean of the Hungarian Reformed Church in the USA. He received his education at the secondary school in Hajdúböszörmény, then studied Theology at the Reformed Theological Academy, Sárospatak, did postgraduate studies in Halle, Germany, as well as in Basel, Zürich and Geneva, Switzerland. In 1946 he received a scholarship to Princeton Seminary, NJ, and an invitation to the ministry of the Hungarian Reformed Church in Staten Island, New York, 1946-1954. Then he was Minister of the Hungarian Reformed Church in Passaic, NJ. (1954-1963), and in the Hungarian Reformed Church in New Brunswick, NJ. (1963-1980). Soon he was elected President of the Hungarian Reformed Federation in America and served in that capacity until his retirement in 1992. He was Minister of the Hungarian Reformed Church in Washington, DC, from 1981. He was former President and Chairman of the American Hungarian Federation; President of the Hungarian Reformed Federation of America (HRFA); a founding Board Member of the Hungarian American Coalition; a representative of the American Section of the World Alliance of Hungarians, and Chairman of the Board of the American Hungarian Federation of Metropolitan Washington, DC. He also served as Associate President of the Hungarian Boys Scouts’ in exile. He was a stalwart advocate of minority rights for Hungarian communities beyond the post-Trianon borders. He was author of many articles and books, including Three Centuries of Hungarian Reformed Peregrinations to Holland with Special Significance of Sárospatak College (1986); A New Beginning in the Soul of the Founders of the State (Újrakezdés az országalapítók lelkületében) (1996); Passion for New Beginnings. One Hundred Years of the People of the American-Hungarian Reformed Church (Újrakezdés népe. Az amerikai magyar reformátusság száz éve) (1966, 1997) and I Sat there…among them (Ott ülék…ő közöttük) (2005). In 1988 the Hope College of Holland, MI bestowed on him an Honorary Doctorate of Divinity. The Theological Faculty of the University of Debrecen, Hungary, also granted him the same Degree in 1989. He received the Officer’s Cross of Republic of Hungary in 2000. Imre Bertalan was one the most important personalities of the Hungarian American community. – B: 0906, T: 7617, 7103.

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