Občianske zrovnoprávnenie alebo náboženský indiferentizmus? Problém zmiešaných manželstiev v kontexte sekularizácie Uhorska v 30. a 40. rokoch 19. storočia

Civil Equality or Religious Indifference? The problem of Mixed Marriages in the Context of the Secularisation of the Hungarian Monarchy in the 40's of the 19th Century

The issue of mixed marriages has been a source of tension and conflict since the period of Josephinism not only between the Catholic Church and the Protestant denominations but it also complicated the relationship of the State and the Church. Civil standards that governed the mixed marriage and childrearing in it did not meet the requirements of either side. They were in violation of the canon law of the Catholic Church and the Protestant side in disadvantage in terms of the religious education of children. Although the Tolerance Patent Act as well as Article 26/1791 abolished the obligation to sign the obligatory oath on the Catholic education of all children, in reality, however, it continued to be required. Escalating disputes related to the increasing number of denominationally mixed families got on the program of the Hungarian Parliament in the 30's of the 19th century. Politicising the issue of mixed marriages was related to the ongoing process of the legal emancipation of Protestants in Kingdom of Hungary. The ultimate aim of the liberal opposition was to enforce the principle of reciprocity as a necessary prerequisite for the development of a civil society and also the strengthening of the Hungarian national movement.
The Catholic Church used their envoys to lobby during the meetings in 1832/1836, 1843/1844 and 1839/1840 to maintain the Catholic Church as a national religion, and was very much against the fundamental liberalisation of conditions within its own functioning. However the general opinion was in favour of the necessity for the equality of Protestants to Catholics. Both camps influenced public opinion through newspapers, pamphlets, circulars, pastoral letters and the like. The Catholic hierarchy required of their priests an observance of Church standards when consecrating mixed marriages, which the majority of counties and members of the national assembly were opposed to. Religious confusion over mixed marriages crippled and hindered the political process and slowed down the necessary reforms. It also complicated not just the relations between denominations on the level of ecclesiastical structures but also the relations between believers and led to a weakening of the authority and the esteem of the clergy.