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Faces of faith: Laszlo S. Pandy-Szekeres.

Laszlo S. Pandy-Szekeres was born in Hungary in 1919. Educated at the Reformed College of Debrecen and the University of Kolozsvar, he obtained two doctorates. While at university, he cochaired the Hungarian National University Student Federation and worked with Reformed Hungarian-speaking Christians around Kolozsvar, Romania. From 1942 to 1947, he practised law in Kolozsvar, Budapest and Debrecen, served two years in the army and was a prisoner of war in Russia. As director of the Peasant Association of Eastern Hungary, he organized and managed co-operatives. He spent seven months in solitary confinement as a political prisoner during 1947. From 1948 to 1950, he was a social worker among Hungarian refugees living in the German-speaking area of Switzerland and was lay preacher of the Hungarian Reformed congregation in Zurich.

Pandy immigrated to Canada in 1950. He worked on a Saskatchewan dairy farm and then as an attendant in a mental institution in Hamilton, Ontario. From 1953 to 1956, he studied at Knox College, Toronto, and was student minister of the Hungarian congregation in Brantford, Ontario. He was called and ordained by Calvin Church in Delhi, Ontario, where he ministered until his retirement in 1978. He also served in synodical and presbytery positions and on various General Assembly committees. Pandy was also active in his community as president of the Delhi Rotary Club, member of the Ontario Council on Multiculturalism, president of the Delhi Chamber of Commerce and president of the Multicultural Association of Norfolk.

Laszlo Pandy and his wife, Piroska Rakossy, a chemist and high school teacher, have three sons -- one is a missionary in Ukraine and two are elders in The Presbyterian Church in Canada -- and one daughter, a church school teacher in the United Church.

What is your earliest memory of church life?

In elementary church school, I had to go to an unheated church every morning with my class

What is your favourite hymn?

The 90th Psalm (Geneva)

What musical piece has most inspired you?

Kodaly's Dances from Galanta

What is your favourite biblical book, and why?

The Gospel of John -- it is simply radiant!

What book (other than the Bible) has most influenced you?

The collection of the complete poems of Endre Ady

Where do you find inspiration to sustain your faith?

The many wonders that have happened to me and in my life

If you could invite anyone (past or present) to a dinner party, whom would you invite?

Winston Churchill

What is your biggest regret?

Not taking time to learn English fluently

What is your greatest joy in life?

My incredibly supportive wife

What do you find most irritating about The Presbyterian Church in Canada?

The lack of leadership and leaders

What one change in the church would make it substantially better?

If the presbyteries could learn "to remember"

How can we save the human race?

By providing a healthy environment for it to be put back into

If you could live a second time, who would you like to be?

Myself

Write your own epitaph

He was here to serve
COPYRIGHT 1999 Presbyterian Record
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Publication:Presbyterian Record
Date:Jul 1, 1999
Words:506
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