ACTUAL INFORMATION ABOUT THE SITUATION OF THE HUNGARIAN EVANGELICAL FELLOWSHIP
Dear Sisters and Brothers, Supporters, Colleagues and Friends:
We would like to inform our colleagues and the public that we at the Hungarian Evangelical Fellowship (MET) will again be able to pay our staff wages on time this month. There were doubts over this in most months in the last ten years, but thanks to God and our supporters, we have managed to do so each pay day.
We can report with cautious delight that faced with our common protests, the National Bureau of Taxation and Customs (NAV) has withdrawn its claims on our account. This at least gives us relative security up to 31 May, so that anyone may pay safely into our advertised account.
We are deeply grateful to our supporters for helping us with almost 15 million forints over the last three weeks. We thank also over 16,000 of you who took the opportunity to sign our petition through aHang (https://szabad.ahang.hu/petitions/koveteljuk-vissza-a-met-egyhazi-statuszat). This support to us can continued, through tax-deducted donations or by joining the petition. (An English petition is available here: https://www.change.org/p/the-government-of-hungary-restore-the-church-status-of-the-hungarian-eangelical-fellowship-immediately)
The struggle is not over: Hungaryʼs Government and Parliament have yet to withdraw their unconstitutional denial of our church status, though we are a recognised denomination originally registered in 1981. We cannot turn to the Strasbourg Court of Human Rights until we have exhausted all possible litigation in this country, but the courts periodically reject our applications as deficient in some respect or other. In that light we still have another 15 court proceedings to pursue.
It is a quiet joy that we have had our 0444 technical number restored to us, so that taxpayers can again transfer to us the 1 per cent of their income-tax bill that they can assign to a chosen church. We ask you to support also our social-service, health-care and education programs by assigning to us your 1 per cent for those ends and to recommend this to your friends and acquaintances. We have sued to retrieve the 1 per cents of personal income tax that have been denied to us since 2015. If these were paid, we could immediately repay our debts, but NAV has bafflingly denied these applications. The NAV says they were late though it is clear as daylight that we made them on time.
Taxpayers can assign 2 percent of their personal income tax. One percent can be offered to any civil organization. If you wish to support our work, you can specify the Oltalom Charity Society as the civil organization to receive this one percent.
The other one percent can only be assigned to a church. With those who do not specify a church, NAV divides it equally among the churches, and so we ask those who can to specify in our favor. We will not spend these funds church renovations or to support ecclesiastical functions. They will go to provide food for children in our schools, to our family-assistance services, to our our hospital and medical surgeries that treat the poor, to looking after the old and to provide shelter and food for the homeless.
To anyone who would also like to their 1 percent of taxes or to make payments directly to our church account, here is the necessary information:
Civilians’ 1 percent can be assigned to: Oltalom Charitable Society – 19010409-1-42
The Chuch 1 percent can be assigned to: MET technical number: 0444
MET account number: 11708001-20520380
It is an honor to us to practice humanity in company with you all and to hope for the coming of justice and rightfulness. Let us add to this these words from the Bible: “For the Lord watches over the way of the righteous, but the way of the wicked will perish.” (Psalm 1:6)
Budapest, 10 March 2021
With heartfelt greetings
Hungarian Evangelical Fellowship (MET)