Grace Extends to Albania
Late last year Ryan King, leader of Grace Baptists in Europe, and his wife Uliana visited Albania to check on the work there. Here is an account of how grace is extending in Albania.
In December, we spent a few days with Beni and Bardha Celanji and their family, who are planting Grace Baptist Church in Elbasan, Albania. One day, we walked into a village bar/cafe to share the gospel. Some men, undevout Muslims, eagerly listened and asked questions as they drank and smoked. The group grew till everyone in the small building was listening. I saw one of the men rolling a cigarette with “Samson” brand tobacco and began to tell a story.
I began with an angel who came to a woman and said “You will bear a son and he will begin to save his people”, and proceeded to tell about Samson’s life in a dramatic way. I ended by telling them about an angel who came to another woman and said “You shall bear a son, and he will save his people from their sins.” I told them, “Samson stretched out his hands in judgement, and prayed for the death of his enemies. Jesus, killed by his enemies, stretched out his hands in mercy and prayed for their forgiveness.”
The men were visibly moved and spoke of the great peace the message gave them, unlike the recent proselytising efforts of Muslims in the village. They gave an open invitation to return, so all of the men in the village could hear the same message.
The harvest is plentiful in Albania but labourers are few. There are places where a new church could readily be established but who will do it?
“For it is all for your sake, so that as grace extends to more and more people it may increase thanksgiving, to the glory of God.” 2 Corinthians 4:15