On Sunday, February 25th, Fr. Milan Dimic, Pastor of St. Emery Church in Fairfield, CT, made the announcement that, in consultation with the diocese of Bridgeport, the decision has been made to end the Hungarian Mass. The last Mass to be regularly said there in Hungarian will be on Easter Sunday, April 1st. The church is not being closed; Mass will continue to be said, but only in English.
Diminishing attendance is the reason for the decision. The parish no longer has the large Hungarian population which built the church 85 years ago when there were four Masses every Sunday. Now, Hungarian Sunday Mass attendance fluctuates between 25 and 15 persons.
Father urged the parishioners to continue attending St. Emery, since everyone has to have a home parish. This will still be theirs, as it is part of their heritage, and since the Mass is the same, no matter in what language it is celebrated.
For 11 years, Fr. Dimic had been Pastor of the Slovenian Church a few miles away, where he also had the sad task of ending the Mass in his native language. He became quite emotional when making the announcement this Sunday.
If a Hungarian priest is available, Mass may still be said in Hungarian.
For the Magyar congregation, this marks the end of an era!
Joseph Cardinal Mindszenty (who visited St. Emery's in 1974); Father Benedek Bíró, first Pastor; Fr. Hippolyt Deesy, Fr. Dennis Albert Szőcs, Fr. George Árpád Mészáros, Fr. Robert Németh, Fr. Louis Pintye – pray for us!