Hungary’s State Secretary and its Ambassador to Canada were on hand in Kipling on Sunday morning to give support to a more than 100 year old church.

Hungarian culture is a fabric of the community of Kipling, and the representatives from Hungary came to take part in a special service to celebrate the Hungarian identity in the Saskatchewan town.

"The government of Hungary it's of the utmost importance to keep connected with the Hungarians living outside of Hungary, and one of the first and oldest Hungarian communities outside of Hungary lives here in Saskatchewan," said Latorcai Csaba, Hungary’s Secretary of State.

The Hungarian government is promising a financial contribution to go towards the renovation of the Bekevar Church. Built in 1911, the municipal historic site is in need of more than $60,000 worth of structural repairs to make it safe for regular use.

To many people in the Kipling area, the church is more than just a place of worship.

“It’s very important in this area because a lot of the people living in the area have Hungarian heritage and it's sort of a meeting point and point of pride for them," said Steven Bonk, a Moosomin MLA. “It was much more than just the church, it symbolizes the Hungarian Community here.”

Many members of the community have devoted their lives to the church, and they are hopeful that its legacy will carry on.

"I may never see it, because I’m 85, and I don't know how long I’ll be here on earth, but i would like to see it come back,” said Adele Daku, a long time pianist at the church. “People are still using it for funerals and weddings there so we hope to keep that alive."

Based on a report by Joey Slattery