The Unbelievable Story of Jásztelek’s Bell
Ceremonial speech of Horváth, Márta Boros when receiving the Honorary Citizen Award from Jásztelek (November 13, 2022)
translated by Ilona Szablya
Laudetur Jesus Christus!
Good day from the city of Seattle, from the State of Washington, on the shores of the Pacific Ocean.
Thank you for the wonderful honor, the kind reception and for the chance of being able to participate in today’s festive event.
It makes me happy that the small world-wanderer bell of Jásztelek arrived home safely, and now we can celebrate this special occasion here.
If someone had told me before February that in November I would be celebrating with the people of Jásztelek the homecoming of their church bell, I probably would have asked: “Where is Jásztelek?” But God’s ways are inscrutable. We can never know ahead of time what God intends to use us for, according to God’s plans.
We can call it chance, or God’s plan, that on February 7th, 2022, I was on my laptop and noticed photos of the bell put onto the Facebook page “Hungarian Valuables” by an American gentleman from Louisiana. I answered his question about what was written on the bell. It was God’s inspiration that made it clear to me, while I was translating the text, that this bell belonged in Hungary and not in an American antiques store.
More and more I feel I was only an instrument in the hands of Providence. Who would have thought that an 80-year-old grandmother (by now 81), who has been living in the USA since 1966, would immediately start working as a detective, would look up Jásztelek on Facebook, would get in touch with Mrs. László Turoczi, Edina, would look up the name of the bell founder, would discover his fame and would recognize the historical, artistic and religious value of the bell?
Something drove me to do even more. I did not stop after I got in touch with Edina. I felt I could help in other ways, too. That is why I wrote immediately to the USA Hungarian Embassy in Washington DC and urged them to act fast because many people wanted to buy the bell.
Finally at the advice of my son Tibor, who had been watching the FB trend in another part of the city, I called the FBI as well. I called three times because the first two times they did not take me seriously. Then, when an FBI agent returned my call, and I could hand him over all the information and photos, I felt I had done everything in my power to save the bell. From then on, the fate of the bell was in the hands of more important people.
I am happy that the authorities and diplomatic representatives made it possible to return the bell in such a short time! Congratulations to the Hungarian Minister of Foreign Affairs for the support of diplomacy!
Finally, I hope for the success of the remodeling, preparing the little chapel so the world-wanderer bell can return to its old, original home. And who knows, maybe I will be able to be there at the rededication of the chapel!
Until then I am very happy for this opportunity today when I could get to know the kind people of Jászság, who have stolen their way into my heart forever! Thank you so much for the title of Honorary Citizen!
God bless all of us, God bless the Hungarians!