Prayer chain launched for PM Orbán

A parish in the Slovakian town of Ipolybalog (Balog nad Ipľom in Slovakian) has launched a “prayer chain” for Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán, reports Hír TV from the Slovakian publication Új Szó.

The purpose of the prayer is to provide the Prime Minister with enough strength in his fight against the European Union. Those who join the chain are required to repeat the prayer, which was written by a Benedictine monk living in Rome, five minutes every day for half a year.

The Slovakian Conference of Bishops considers the prayer chain a private action and is taking no position on the matter.

Nick Thorpe: “bitterness” evident in Hungarian political scene

Nick Thorpe, the BBC’s long-time correspondent in Central Europe, has penned a Hungarian-language opinion piece in HVG about “Hungarian bitterness,” comparing the local scene with his recent experiences working in Northern Ireland.

“Bitter winds blow in Hungarian politics this fall – whether from the opposition or the government. Between one-half to one million people have left Hungary in recent years. They were embittered that they could not make a living in their homeland,” he states.

Thorpe writes that both Viktor Orbán’s government and his opponents have become embittered, but the antidote to this bitterness is generosity, especially towards the recent influx of refugees into the country.

Orbán to meet UK’s Prime Minister May next week

Buzzfeed is reporting that Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán will be in London next week to meet his counterpart in the UK, Theresa May, after the latter returns from a trip to India.

“Orbán’s visit will fuel accusations from a number of EU and European officials that Britain is building an alliance with Hungary’s right-wing leader in an attempt to divide and conquer the EU in Brexit negotiations.

He is viewed as a controversial ally for Britain because of his government’s stance on refugees, an alleged crackdown on freedom of speech, and tensions with other governments and the EU over the balance of powers between Europe’s institutions and its member states,” the site writes.

Buzzfeed also notes that Mr. Orbán was one of the few leaders to praise Prime Minister May at an EU Council Summit in Brussels last month.