Posted by: igtalbania | January 28, 2017

A winter’s tale

In the midst of the coldest winter to hit Albania for over 20 years, we set off from Fier for the south eastern town of Erseka. Our main purpose was for me to teach at the Torchbearers school there from the book of Ecclesiastes but we encountered much more on our travels.


Erseka in the snow

Light for the blind!

The blind group in the town of Korce braved the elements to come together to study God’s Word. This group, led by the pastor of the host church Berti and Arjan Kacimbro, meet together fortnightly for worship and Bible study. This year the foundation “Light for the Blind” have been able to supply finance for a van which picks up the blind and partially sighted from their doorsteps and takes them home afterwards. We have also been able to supply firewood and food for some of the most vulnerable of the group members.

What strikes you immediately is the attentiveness of this group! They really listen! They apply God’s Word to their situations straight away and are like sponges soaking up what you teach them. How thrilled they were with a visit from someone outside the town and what a challenge they are to me. Do I really desire the Word like a newborn baby?

The “Foleza” project

The “Foleza” or ” The nest” project is a wonderful initiative based in the Erseka church buildings. What really impressed me was that this was not the work of a multinational charity organisation with offices in different countries. This is based in the local church and employs people from the local church to tackle some of the hardest challenges in society here. The local church is getting involved in one of the poorest areas of the country with some of the hardest social and economic conditions.

The project allows extremely poor and vulnerable children to come in to the church after school, having often been referred to them by social services, to have a hot meal, to do their homework and then to study some more so that they can catch up at school. The central point of all that they do though is a daily Bible lesson. There are also a number of orphans who are being housed across the road at a small orphanage which is being run by missionaries and local church members.

Some hard subjects are broached! When we visited one of the employees, Valter, told us that many of these children will soon be vulnerable to child trafficking and also to pimps who will use them as prostitutes in the country.

The “Udhekryq” school


Will teaching at the Torchbearers school

I was given the challenge of teaching through the book of Ecclesiastes in 4 days. Students from Canada, the US, Germany, Kosova and Albania all came together to study this incredible book. The group was so attentive and a delight to know but the teaching itself was a challenge. Why? Because this book touches some of the most important issues in our walk with God. It certainly cut me to the bone and challenged me as to whether or not God is my greatest treasure.


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