Franciscan monk Csaba Böjte, whose foundation operates several orphanages in Transylvania received the Pro Cultura Hungarica award in Budapest on the Day of Hungarian Culture.
The award was presented by Minister of Human Capacities Miklós Kásler, who said Böjte began his service as a priest in the Romanian town of Déva in 1992 and he immediately took in a few street urchins.
From those modest beginnings the St Francis Foundation has now grown into an organization that operates 26 live-in orphanages in Transylvania, home to 2,500 children.
“The duty of all men is love, building communities and working and creating in these communities”, Böjte said when accepting the award.
Since the end of Communism Hungary celebrates the Day of Hungarian Culture on January 22, the day when poet Ferenc Kölcsey wrote in 1823 the final version of the lyrics for the National Anthem, put to music by composer Ferenc Erkel in 1844.
Title image: Csaba Böjte’s acceptance speech at the Hungarian Heritage House in Budapest. (MTI/Noémi Bruzák)