Hungarian religious samizdat on the life of Magdi Bódi



Hungarian religious samizdat on the life of Magdi Bódi
Magyar vallási szamizdat kiadvány Bódi Magdi életéről


The first image depicts the cover of the samizdat book entitled Ketten egy felé… III. Ki volt Bódi Magdi (Two towards one… III. Who was Magdi Bódi?). The second image is the inside cover of the book with the text: Ketten egy felé… Szent Goretti Mária és Bódi Magdi utja. 1956, Karácsonyán. – Kézirant gyanánt.- (Two towards one… The life of St. Maria Goretti and Magdi Bódi. 1956, Christmas. -As manuscipt). The third image is a photograph of Magdi Bódi from the book with the caption below the image reading “Fűzfő angyala”, “The Angel of Fűzfő.” The last image is of page 204 of the confiscated book and depicts the tomb of Magdi Bódi in the village of Litér and the caption reads: A litéri sír… Magdi! – Élsz Krisztusban!...(The tomb in Litér… Magdi! You live in Christ!).
The typewritten book is an account of Mária Magdolna Bódi (1921-1945), a working-class girl from Balatonfűzfő. Her life story is paralleled with that of the martyr St. Maria Goretti. Magdi Bódi was a young Catholic girl who had made a vow of chastity to Christ. She was active in organizing faith life in Balatonfűzfő having initiated the local group of the Hungarian Catholic Working Women’s Movement. According to the book, Magdi Bódi’s parish priest instructed her to always keep a knife or scissors with her in order to be able to defend herself against the violence of the Soviet soldiers. In 1945 a Soviet soldier shot her as she was trying to protect herself from sexual assault.
The typewritten book contains original photograph illustrations of Magdi, some with her family and one of her tomb stone with a crucifix. In the dossier, the tomb of Magdi Bódi is discussed as a place of gathering of reactionary priests and sisters.
The szamizdat book was written by a Catholic abbot, Dr. Miklós Galambos, in 1955. He had heard of Magdi Bódi’s martyrdom while imprisoned in Veszprém. The book is the third part of a series. The first two parts of the book series tell of the life of St. Maria Goretti. The content of the book is discussed in the dossier as anti-Soviet content in the guise of religion.
The book was confiscated from Dr. István Kiss, professor of theology and vice-director of the Theological College of Eger. Dr. Kiss was the target of the operative dossier in which the book is located as he was a representative in the Hungarian National Assembly for the Independent Smallholders’ Party and had strong connections with the high clergy and the democratic opposition leaders between 1945-48. Authorities judged him to be reactionary and he was under surveillance from 1951 onwards. His name occurs in several other secret police dossiers as he was openly anti-communist and is accused of educating the seminary students of the Theological College in this mentality.
Dr. Kiss was interrogated in 1958 and on several other occassions for spreading the illegal samizdat entitled “The Angel of Füzitő.” His ownership of the book was used as evidence against him.
After 1989 there has been a growing cult of Magdi Bódi, especially in her home town where she was buried. Her beatification process was initiated by the Hungarian Catholic Church in 2017.

The images and the book are found in ÁBTL 3.1.5. O-8934 along with intercepted letters to Dr. Kiss, an operative plan to disclose the details of the circulation of the illegal book and interrogation reports.

For related entries see:


Communism and Christianity--Europe, Eastern
Communism--Europe, Eastern--History--20th century
Secret police (secret service)
Material culture--Religious aspects
Evidence, criminal
Underground literature


Kinga Povedák


Állambiztonsági Szolgálatok Történeti Levéltára
ÁBTL 3.1.5. O-8934


This project has received funding from the European Research Council (ERC) under the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme No . 677355




Kinga Povedák


copyright for these images belongs to ÁBTL








ÁBTL 3.1.5. O-8934


20th century

Bibliographic Citation

Kinga Povedák, "Hungarian religious samizdat on the life of Magdi Bódi"

Date Created