We are convinced that it is not only the main entrance through which one may enter the 2,000-year-old building of Christian culture. There is a not too spectacular, rather hidden backdoor (in Latin: posticum), often considered to be insignificant, which also leads to the Holy of Holies.
In the last two decades, Posticum has tried to fulfill this backdoor-role by offering a wide range of cultural and charity programmes. Gradually, the focus has been shifted towards finding and nourishing our inner energy sources, and so, aligning with the signs of the times, we have identified the backdoor ever more with silence and contemplation.
Silence is, of course, not everything, only a gate; but everybody must go through it if they want to experience religion as something more than emptied folklore, and liturgies as events more than hollow, impersonal traditions. If someone enters the building of the Church not through the gate of silence, they may easily have a pleasant cultural experience like a guided tour in a museum, but the direct perception of the Eternal’s presence will be lacking from their life. And life without that experience tends to become superficial and boring, loses its colours and savour.
Hence, Posticum’s backdoor is first and foremost open to those who wish to gather this indispensable life-energy from the source of silence and contemplation, and are endeavouring to find their personal life-path in the noisy maze of mass-culture.
We furthermore believe that not only as individuals but also as religious communities it is through the way of contemplation that we may discover the common source being present in every major world religion, and that by nourishing us from there we have the chance to build a society of fraternity despite all our historical, cultural and theological differences.
Our short history
Posticum’s history began with one person. It took the cooperation, ideas, financial and hands-on support of many for the dream to become reality, yet the responsibility of the whole endeavour was borne by Imre Rencsik, a Catholic priest specialized in youth pastoring.
The association was legally registered in 1994, while foundations of its headquarters were laid down two years later. The building-complex was finally consecrated on 21st May in the year 2000 by bishop József Tempfli, at the finissage of the renowned city-festival Varadinum.
poet János Zudor, 21st May, 2000
According to the founders’ wish, the centre opened on the anniversary of Oradea’s foundation. They thought that “a new city, a spiritual polis” was needed at the end of the millennium. Anyone may become its citizen, who is ready to contribute with their thoughts, knowledge and deeds to the development of the wider community: the nation, and a country with European values.
Since 2000, the centre has become one of Oradea’s major cultural hubs, characterized by an open spiritual atmosphere that invites guests for a more authentic and humane life.
About the building
“Imre, I’m gonna plan such a house for you that if someone enters, they’d feel there’s a different world inside.”
Arnold Szabó, former chief architect of Oradea
The ground on which Posticum was built was a kind offering of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Oradea. In the middle of the 20. century a clergy house had been built on it that was later used by locals as chapel. In the following decades the yard in front of the building was grown in by vegetation, while many used the place for dumping their garbage. In the cellar homeless people took a dwelling.
The construction of Posticum began in 1996, based on the plans of Arnold Szabó. The guesthouse was the first wing to be erected in the following two years. It has five storeys with altogether ten rooms, a restaurant and a kitchen. The furniture were made in Posticum’s Don Bosco joiner workshop according to the plans of interior architect Eszter Mészöly.
The other two wings, built between 1998 and 2000, include the lounge (serving also as an event venue), the chapel, the Jazzland (a music venue in the basement), the teahouse and the library, among other spaces.
The unusual architectural design posed a considerable challenge in the implementation. An example is the chapel’s roof structure that resembles a ship hull. That alone took several months to complete, but the experiences gathered were of great value in the builders’ later career. The construction’s final phase was building a garden in the embrace of the edifices. It was realized by two young students, artist Szilárd Filep and garden designer Ágnes Füzesi.
In 2005 arose the need to expand the capacity of the guesthouse with another building. The first draft plans were made by students of the University of Liechtenstein in the summer of 2007. Among these Aline Müller’s was found best. After finalizing her plans, construction began in early 2010 at the site of the old clergy house. The interior spaces were designed by Oradean painter Costea Constantin.
Board of trustees
1. Béla Csernák
2. Imre Rencsik
3. Andrea Mária Wagner
4. István Bakó
5. István Bruncsák
6. Ferenc Csibi
7. Sándor Szilárd Fekete
8. Ferenc György
9. Karl Gritsch
10. Konrad Fundneider
11. Lydia Loibl
12. István Pál
13. István Rencsik
14. Tibor Rencsik
15. Aloysius Sághy
16. Johann Schiermeier
17. Gedeon Hidber Gyula Zsugán
18. Constantin Daniel Costea
19. János Zsigmond Kristófi
20. István Szaladják
21. Viktor Jecs