Theosophy in Wales

Ancient & Modern

History of the Theosophical Society in Wales


Charitable Works for the Children

of Hungary & Wales 1924


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The tradition of helping charities or supporting good causes has continued since the early days of Theosophy in Wales and the work outlined here is a good indicator of the concern of Theosophists for less fortunate people both in the UK and abroad and their preparedness to take action.


The Children of Hungary


It is recorded in meeting notes of 1924 that a large amount of clothing had been made and forwarded to the children of Hungary. The report makes no mention of any (used) clothing being collected but it seems unlikely that only “made” clothing was sent. This initiative was a national effort on the part of the Theosophical Society and involved Theosophists and others all over Wales. Conditions in Hungary were brought to the attention of the TS in Wales by Welsh Theosophists who attended the 1923 International Convention in Vienna, some of whom visited Budapest.


The early 1920s were a difficult time in the newly independent Hungary which was formed in 1918 from the break up of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. Within months of independence Hungary experienced a Communist revolution under Bela Kun who established a communist State which lasted only 133 days before being overthrown by Rumanian forces which occupied Budapest. As the Rumanian forces withdrew in 1920, the Regency of Admiral Miklos Horthy was established. Mikos Horthy’s government survived an attempted coup in 1921 and his regime forced many Hungarians into exile. 


The Children of Merthyr


In records for the same year Mr John Marzan is commended for his work with the “poor children of Merthyr”. The work is not specified but it is known that Mr Marzan was involved in many charities that provided real practical help for deprived people in Wales and was particularly concerned about the effects of malnutrition. He also organized trips to the seaside for underprivileged children, some of whom has never seen the sea. It is also known that Mr Marzan continued his work for many years.


Despite a boom in the coal industry in the 30 years leading up to the First World War, there had always been social deprivation in Merthyr. This was generally true throughout the South Wales Coalfield. The situation worsened after 1918 with a fall in the worldwide demand for coal.


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Theosophical Society, Cardiff Lodge,

206 Newport Road, Cardiff, CF24 – 1DL.