The president of European Union for Progressive Judaism, Leslie Bergman, is continuing the EUPJ’s and the World Union for Progressive Judaism campaign to ensure that the Hungarian government recognizes Sim Shalom and Bet Orim, Budapest’s two Progressive congregations. In recent meetings with Hungarian authorities, an EUPJ/WUPJ delegation headed by EUPJ President Leslie Bergman and WUPJ President Rabbi Stephen Fuchs indicated in the strongest terms that nothing less than “full unreserved recognition and first class status would be acceptable.”
Under recently passed legislation by the country’s center-right government, religious institutions are subject to government grading, which impacts the degree of public funding they receive. While the Orthodox community has been granted first class status, Progressive Judaism was only granted second class status.
The delegation also met with the leaders of MAZSIHISZ, the state recognized Jewish organization which has effectively had a monopoly over recognition and major funding, and which refused Sim Shalom membership some years ago.
Intensive meetings with the leaders of our two communities and their rabbis led to increased cooperation between them, creating a catalyst for the formation of an umbrella Hungarian Progressive Jewish Association.
Source: European Union for Progressive Judaism