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A (Very) Brief History of the Church in Hungary

1885 – The first missionaries in

Mormon Missionaries Enter Eastern Europe

Mormon Missionaries Enter Eastern Europe (BYU Press, 2002)

Hungary were Thomas Biesinger and Paul Hammer. They served in Budapest for less than three months, and finally left. They had little success

1887 – The first known Hungarian convert was baptized in Turkey (Mischa Markow); he later taught the gospel in Hungary

1900 – Missionaries in Temesvar (now in Romania) had a branch of 31 members – these missionaries were forced by the government to leave Hungary in 1901

World War I1911 – The Church received legal recognition in Hungary – a total of 106 people were known to be baptized prior to World War I

1978 – The first missionary couple were called to serve in Hungary – Joseph and Kathleen Bentley served for 18 months

1985 – The Freiberg Temple in the German Democratic Republic was dedicated (based on the publicity, Hungarian officials contacted the Church to see if Frieberg Templemissionaries could serve in Hungary)

1987 – The Church was given limited recognition by the government

1987 – Elder Russell M. Nelson of the Russell M. NelsonQuorum of the Twelve dedicated the land of Hungary for the preaching of the restored gospel

1987 – The first young Elders arrived in Hungary

1988 – The Church was given full recognition by the government

President Monson1989 – Hungary’s first meetinghouse was dedicated by President Thomas S. Monson (Counselor in the First Presidency)

1990 – The Hungarian Mission was created with 75 members in one districtThe Book of Mormon in Hungarian

1990 – 130 members

1991 – The Book of Mormon was published in Hungarian

1991 – The Mormon Tabernacle Choir performed in Budapest

Dallin H. Oaks1992 – Elder Dallin H. Oaks of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles visited Hungary

1992 – 600 members

1994 – 1,800 members

1995 – The Doctrine and Covenants was published in Hungarian

Jeffrey R Holland1996 – Elder Jeffrey R. Holland of the Quorum of the Twelve visited Hungary

2002 – 3,600 members.

2003 – A new mission home was dedicated in BudapestMission Home in Budapest

2003 – 3,829 members

2005 – 4,147 members

2006 – The first stake was created in Hungary – the Budapest Hungary Stake (it was also the first stake created in the former communist-controlled Eastern bloc of nations)

2009 – 4,474 members


Based primarily on information in the LDS Church News, and the Newsroom at LDS.org


  • Karolina

    Thank you for sharing this! It brought tears to my eyes while reading. 🙂
    It was just a month after Elder Nelson dedicated Hungary in April 1987 that my parents (then not yet members of the church) decided to move to Hungary (my Dad is German so we had lived in Germany before). I was 4 and my sister was 4 months old.
    In 1989 we were there when Pres. Monson dedicated the first meeting house (which was a rented villa up in Hűvösvölgyi út here in Budapest). There were so few members when he shook our hands as we were standing in a circle that he went around three times before he realized that he had already made the round.
    When the Book of Mormon was fully translated in 1991 it was a beautiful christmas gift that was passed out to our branch in Szombathely. I still remember how happy we were that we could now read the whole book and not just excerpts. I still have my first copy and the old one that only has excerpts. In 1991 we moved to Germany where we experienced multiple stakes and wards and saw how the church should function when functioning well.
    In 2003 my parents were called on a Mission (from Germany) to serve as CES missionaries for two years in the soon to be Outreach Center (or mission home) here in Budapest that just got dedicated.
    In 2006 we finally knew why the Lord had wanted us to move to Germany and see how well functioning stakes worked when my Dad was called as the second counselor in the first stake presidency.
    We were also there on the first Sunday that there were meetings held in Szombathely in rented rooms upstairs in the Museum. There were two missionaries, the four of us, the branch president and a lady who was investigating. Within a few years it grew to two branches, one met in the morning and another in the afternoon (that was across from the train station). Before that we had to go to Austria to attend church that was only 120 kilometers away (Budapest would have been 200 kilometers). Szombathely was now only 60 kilometers away.
    It is wonderful to see how the church has grown since those days.
    We are experiencing another boost in growth these days but this time it’s much different. It’s accelerating in a way that can no longer be stopped. It’s weird to see that I don’t know everyone any more. The church used to be so small that everyone knew everyone. But now it’s great to attend YSA Conference and you actually meet new people you haven’t met before.
    Thank you for having served in our country and for having contributed so much to the work and the people here!

    October 3, 2012
    • Elder Bailey

      We would love to come back. Hungary is a beautiful country with beautiful people.

      January 1, 2013

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