Bonfires will be lit in 31 settlements in the Szekler region of Transylvania on Sunday evening, on the occasion of the celebration of the founding of the Hungarian state.
The regional organization of the Democratic Alliance of Hungarians in Romania (DAHR) in Háromszék said in a statement that the St. Stephen’s Day bonfires will be lit on the hills of 31 settlements in Covasna county at 21:00 on Sunday.
Fact Háromszék (Three Seats; Romanian: Trei Scaune) was an administrative county (comitatus) of the Kingdom of Hungary. Situated in south-eastern Transylvania, its territory is now in central Romania (in the counties of Covasna, Brașov and Bacău). The capital of the county was Sepsiszentgyörgy (now Sfântu Gheorghe).
Regional President Sándor Tamás asked members of the local Hungarian communities to take part in the events. He reminded that St. Stephen’s Day is a celebration of all Hungarians.
For us it is more than a calendar holiday, it includes our thousand years of history, traditions and culture. Here, in Szeklerland, we are lighting the fires that are like lanterns in the darkness of the night, signaling that we are at home in the Carpathian bend.
The bonfires will be lit at 21:00 on 20 August in all settlements, but in many places local communities will commemorate the founding of the Hungarian state with all-day celebrations. In addition to church services and holy masses, there will also be food blessings, folk dance performances and cultural programs in several places.
In Kézdiszentlélek (Sânzieni), the Fiesta of Perkő, the most important event for Roman Catholics in Háromszék, will be held on this day. The procession starts in the morning from the statue of St. Stephen to the chapel of Perkő on the hill near the village, where the solemn mass will be celebrated. In the afternoon, traditional guards will perform, and in the evening, before the bonfire, the Hungarian band Republic will give a concert.
In Sfântu Gheorghe, a festive program will be held at the St Stephen’s statue from 19:00, including the blessing of the new bread.
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