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Scholarship fund helped over 1,000 Hungarians in 250 years

Tags: Excerpts from the Windmill

UTRECHT – Over one thousand theological students from Hungary have been helped by a Dutch scholarship fund over the past 250 years. Stipendium Bernardinum, founded in 1761 after the death of the Dutch merchant Daniel Bernard Guiljammz and intended for Reformed students from the Palatinate and Hungary, recently celebrated its 250th anniversary. Over the centuries, hundreds of students from these territories studied theology in Utrecht. A recent symposium considered The History of Religious Tolerance of Minorities in Western and Central / Eastern Europe and was held at the Geertekerk, where Stipendium Bernardinum’s founder was buried. Mirjam van Veen, professor of church history at the Free University in Amsterdam, looked at the subject from the perspective of Western Europe. Valentin Kozhuharov, a theologian who formerly worked in Moscow, approached it from the Eastern European perspective. In a program led by the Hungarian Református Church, a plaque was unveiled in memory of Daniel Bernard Guiljammz. Red. M. Schinkelshoek who is currently completing a dissertation on the Stipendium, looked at the impact of the scholarship fund. Gabriella Timar, director of the Bible Museum in Budapest, spoke about her experiences as student in the Netherlands. The scholarship fund is but one example of how the Netherlands supported Reformed church groups in the regions of Europe which lacked freedom and funds.