The Albanian Bible Institute

The Albanian Bible Institute:

Preparing workers for the harvest field

The fields are indeed white unto harvest and the labourers are few in Albania. For the last 17 years, the Albanian Bible Institute has been preparing leaders and workers for the church in Albania and Kosova. Initially the Institute offered a residential course for two or three years which meant that students had one intensive week at school and then another week to serve in their local churches. However, times have changed in Albania. People can no longer afford to leave their employment and families for any length of time and the Institute realized that a new approach was necessary to keep on preparing workers. For the last four years A.B.I. has been going to local churches and offering seminars and a year long Bible certificate course which takes students from Genesis to Revelation in the course of a school year.

New courses begun

Durres students November 2014

Durres students November 2014

Last year the school operated in Fier and in Tirana but two new courses have been opened. First, on September 15th  a new year of studies was opened in Durres for students who are working during the day and coming to classes at night.  God sent  6 very teachable young men to study with us.  This is the first time in awhile there has been an all-male group at ABI. One of the students is a medical doctor which is another first.

Second, on September 27th  a new branch was started in the city of Elbasan.  The teachers were expecting six students there, but God sent nine!  Five men and four ladies are in this group.  This is a very active group of students and our class discussions are always very lively.  Many in this group have been to university and have professional jobs.  The level of seriousness and academic discipline is higher than in most of the groups we have had in the past. Elbasan is 70 km (44 miles) from Durres, which is about an hour and ten minutes by car.

Elbasan Students November 2014

Elbasan Students November 2014

 

Gradution for the Tirana school

It was a delight to see so many students from the Tirana course graduate recently. The Fier church was especially proud of Alketa Feshti who began studying in Fier, then got married in Tirana, and managed to complete her studies with the Tirana group. Another especially encouraging testimony was from Zamira Turhani who has been studying on and off with ABI for several years and at long last has managed to graduate. She and her husband have worked for several years in a village church planting work outside of Tirana and have found the going very hard indeed. Zamira has never given up her studies and has been a real model of perseverance!

Pellumb and Lee Graduation 2014

Pellumb and Lee Graduation 2014

Tirana graduation 2014

Tirana graduation 2014

Zamira Turhani Graduate 2014

Zamira Turhani Graduate 2014

Supporting village churches!

The village of Vlocisht near Korce, on the south eastern side of Albania, seems an unlikely place for Bible training. However, the work has been a long term one. The village was first evangelised in the early 1990’s by the Korce church and has been the focus of ministry for a team working in co operation with Medical Ambassadors International. Ministry with children, Bible studies with men and women, and relief work have all lead to the establishment of a church there. Recently a new building was opened in the village for meetings and now a group of students are gathering in the winter months to prepare themselves for God’s service.

Many of the students in this area work in agriculture in Greece during the spring and summer months.  In the winter when they are in Albania, they want to have Bible courses so they can “stock up” before they return to Greece for the spring and summer. With the courses in Durres, Elbasan and Vlocist there have never had this many students in any year in the school’s history.  They also have never conducted three schools in one academic year.  This is a real challenge in terms of travelling and endurance.  Vlochisht is almost a four hour drive away from Durres.  There will be modular teaching for a week at the time down there because daily travel is prohibitive. By the end of this winter Lee and Pellumb will have spent 10 weeks there.

Supporting those who train others

The Illyrian Gospel Trust and Albanian Bible Institute have a cooperative agreement in place through which we are seeking to support the ongoing work of this school. There is a great need for help in supporting Pellumb Ranxha in this ministry as our first Albanian member of faculty. Pellumb is himself a graduate of ABI and went on to pastoral ministry in the southern town of Gramsh. Pellumb served on the board of ABI and then was called as trainee teacher. Now as a member of faculty he has a vital role in the work of the school. His experience of Albanian pastoral ministry equips him all the more to train other leaders and workers. However Albanian churches are unable as yet to support workers like this. We need your help not only to support Pellumb but the ongoing work of the school.

If you are interested in helping this ministry please contact the Trust Secretary for more details.

Prayer points:

  • Please pray for the students we have in Durres and Elbasan.  In each group we have 7 students who are coming to school at night after working in another job during the day.  The school is often a challenge for them both physically and mentally as they try to balance their jobs, school, family life and church life.  Pray for strength and wisdom to manage well their time.
  •  Pray for our new branch of ABI which is beginning in the village of Vlocisht near Korca. We anticipate having 15-20 students in this relatively new church who are eager to learn the word of God.  Please pray for us as we travel and spend two weeks a month down there throughout the winter.
  • Pray for Lee Bradley and for Pellumb Ranxha who work full time for the Institute. Pray that God would use them not only in teaching but in visiting and contacting previous students to give them encouragement and support. Pray for the visiting teachers in the different locations that God might use them also.
  • Pray for God to lead us as we are in the process of adding one, maybe two teachers to our staff in the next two years. We are praying for God’s timing and all details to come together to make this a reality as we very much need more help to cover the increasing number of churches that are asking for our help.

If  you would like to know more about the ministry of the Albanian Bible Institute please click on to their website.

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Responses

  1. Hello, I´m Abraham Warkentin from Germany. I´m writing for John. He is visiting our church for more than a year. In three weeks, he will go back to Durees, Albania. He interested to go to a Bible school. Could you send more Information about the Bible School?

    • Dear Abraham, many thanks for your message! I am afraid that at the moment the Albanian Bible Institute does not have a residential program or full time course to be able to follow. As far as I know as well there is not a course to follow in Durres. My suggestion would be that he might contact the director of the school Pellumb Ranxha whose number, in Albania, is 069606013434. He will be able to help more!

  2. Glad to have found further information about IGT. Do you circulate news/prayer letters from time to time? If so please add Rea & Ruth Grant to your email list.
    We have happy memories of Will Niven’s visit to Bethany Baptist Church in Bangor, Northern Ireland some time ago and have been praying for him, never forgetting his appeal for more missionaries and for leaders to emerge in the churches.
    Your friends in Christ:
    REA & RUTH GRANT.

    • Dear Rea and Ruth, Many thanks for your message. We do appreciate so much you contacting us. We will make sure that Will has your email address and adds you to the newsletter list! Warmest greetings!


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