Hungary Jews Bounce Leader Mate Feldmajer for Anti-Gay Stand

Umbrella Group Insists on Opposition to Hatred

By JTA

Published November 25, 2013.
  • Print
  • Share Share

Hungarian Jewish leaders condemned a prominent member of the community for his anti-gay statements.

On Monday, the Mazsihisz federation of Jewish communities ordered an internal investigation into the conduct of Mate Feldmajer, head of the Mazsihisz youth division, who last week said in an internal email that homosexuals “do not make recommendations [at Mazsihisz],” and should not touch or read from the Torah, or preside as members of the Mazsihisz board.

Mazsihisz, or the Federation of Hungarian Jewish Communities, is the main umbrella group of Hungarian Jewry and is affiliated with the Neolog community, a moderate reformist movement.

In a statement issued Monday, Mazsihisz wrote that the community “strongly condemns any manifestation of exclusion,” adding: “Our Association opposes and combats racism and anti-Roma sentiment, anti-Semitism and homophobia.”

The statements by Mate Feldmajer – a son of Mazsihisz’s former president, Peter Feldmajer — were made in response to criticisms of Mate Feldmajer’s performance by a fellow Jewish leader identified as David S., whom Hungarian media reported was gay.

David S. criticized Mate Feldmajer in connection to a charity activity organized last week at Csenyete, a town in northeastern Hungary.

Led by Mate Feldmajer, Jewish and Muslim activists distributed clothes and other gifts to impoverished Hungarians from the Roma community of Csenyete. During the Nov. 17 distribution, dozens of Roma began squabbling, shoving and threatening each other.

David S. wrote that the distribution was “in violation of the fundamentals of our beliefs on how charity should be performed.”


The Jewish Daily Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Jewish Daily Forwardrequires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and The Jewish Daily Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.





Find us on Facebook!
  • Israeli soldiers want you to buy them socks. And snacks. And backpacks. And underwear. And pizza. So claim dozens of fundraising campaigns launched by American Jewish and Israeli charities since the start of the current wave of crisis and conflict in Israel and Gaza.
  • The sign reads: “Dogs are allowed in this establishment but Zionists are not under any circumstances.”
  • Is Twitter Israel's new worst enemy?
  • More than 50 former Israeli soldiers have refused to serve in the current ground operation in #Gaza.
  • "My wife and I are both half-Jewish. Both of us very much felt and feel American first and Jewish second. We are currently debating whether we should send our daughter to a Jewish pre-K and kindergarten program or to a public one. Pros? Give her a Jewish community and identity that she could build on throughout her life. Cons? Costs a lot of money; She will enter school with the idea that being Jewish makes her different somehow instead of something that you do after or in addition to regular school. Maybe a Shabbat sing-along would be enough?"
  • Undeterred by the conflict, 24 Jews participated in the first ever Jewish National Fund— JDate singles trip to Israel. Translation: Jews age 30 to 45 travelled to Israel to get it on in the sun, with a side of hummus.
  • "It pains and shocks me to say this, but here goes: My father was right all along. He always told me, as I spouted liberal talking points at the Shabbos table and challenged his hawkish views on Israel and the Palestinians to his unending chagrin, that I would one day change my tune." Have you had a similar experience?
  • "'What’s this, mommy?' she asked, while pulling at the purple sleeve to unwrap this mysterious little gift mom keeps hidden in the inside pocket of her bag. Oh boy, how do I answer?"
  • "I fear that we are witnessing the end of politics in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. I see no possibility for resolution right now. I look into the future and see only a void." What do you think?
  • Not a gazillionaire? Take the "poor door."
  • "We will do what we must to protect our people. We have that right. We are not less deserving of life and quiet than anyone else. No more apologies."
  • "Woody Allen should have quit while he was ahead." Ezra Glinter's review of "Magic in the Moonlight": http://jd.fo/f4Q1Q
  • Jon Stewart responds to his critics: “Look, obviously there are many strong opinions on this. But just merely mentioning Israel or questioning in any way the effectiveness or humanity of Israel’s policies is not the same thing as being pro-Hamas.”
  • "My bat mitzvah party took place in our living room. There were only a few Jewish kids there, and only one from my Sunday school class. She sat in the corner, wearing the right clothes, asking her mom when they could go." The latest in our Promised Lands series — what state should we visit next?
  • Former Israeli National Security Advisor Yaakov Amidror: “A cease-fire will mean that anytime Hamas wants to fight it can. Occupation of Gaza will bring longer-term quiet, but the price will be very high.” What do you think?
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.