Albania is a country where corruption and unemployment are rampant, but where beautiful things are also happening. Where persistent prayer bears fruit. And where muslims ask about the good news.
Our team leader, Aad van der Maas, explains: “We regularly have students who are really ‘hungry’ for more. They attend the classes and are really interested in learning more about the Christian faith. We have been able to refer a number of students to local churches or a Bible school for further study.”
Aad asks for prayer: “The background of the students is very diverse. In Kosovo (where many Albanians live) we mainly reach Muslims, for whom it is difficult to visit a church due to family pressure. Pray that these online courses will provide them with an opportunity to learn about the Christian faith.”
In addition to Albania and Kosovo, students often come from Germany, Greece, etc., where large groups live who have emigrated in recent years. It is often difficult for them to speak about the Christian faith in their own language with others. These people are encouraged through the courses!
There are also major concerns around our Albanian team. Aad: “The number of mentors is not large. We need more mentors and people who can manage the chat. The church in Albania is young, fragile and fragmented. Prayer is needed for church leaders to be more focused on cooperation and mutual encouragement.”
Corruption and unemployment in Albania and Kosovo are high. Many people feel compelled to emigrate. Churches are shrinking as a result and a number of mentors from the course have left. Pray for better employment opportunities so that people will be more likely to stay.
Unfortunately, the team gets a lot of rude reactions from Muslims via Facebook and the chat, who are annoyed that this course is being offered. Prayer for wisdom on how to deal with these reactions is much needed.
Despite the fact that the church in Albania is vulnerable, there is also good news that many Dutch churches can learn from: “Many churches are aware of the need for discipleship and evangelization. Missionaries have even been sent abroad! Many Christians are convinced that persistent prayer for the country has led to these beautiful developments.” Praying for the needs of a country, a people, is oh so important!
Photo by George Kourounis on Unsplash