Almost all public events lined up for the August 20 national holiday may have been cancelled in light of the coronavirus, but Hungarians up and down the country are still marking the milestone today.
The August 20 holiday traditionally honors a more than 1,000-year-old state that protects not only its own identity and culture but also the culture, borders and identity of Europe.
The traditional St Stephen’s Day mass will be held amid strict healthcare regulations in Budapest’s St Stephen Basilica.
The Esztergom-Budapest Diocese said that mass this year will be celebrated by Cardinal Péter Erdő in the basilica with only those invited present, observing strict guidelines. Usually the mass is held on the square in front of the church to tens of thousands of pilgrims.
The procession will be replaced by a liturgy in the basilica and the cardinal’s blessing, the statement said. Duna Television and Katolikus Rádió will broadcast the ceremony live.