Today the team headed out after breakfast to drive to Elbasan and Cërrik in the center of Albania and along the Via Egnatia (Dave and Jared shared the driving). The purpose of the trip was to visit church planters and pastors, learn, pray and encourage. The day was a blessing!
We arrived at Kristian Kotorri’s home located in a small village near Cërrik. There he lives in a home with his mom, wife Ersina and son Emanuel (9 months). We were served refreshments, shared testimonies and learned how Kristian is spreading the gospel throughout 5 villages and beyond in an area of over 290,000 people.
Kristian has an exuberant passion for the Lord and sharing the gospel. He is bi-vocational to support his family and his ministry. He is farming for the first time and we visited the fields he has planted with broccoli, cauliflower and two types of cabbage. Finances are tight and growing is difficult. Judy Thomas shared this verse and we prayed over the crops in the field. The harvest will be early December.
Ps 126:6 He who goes out weeping, bearing the seed for sowing, shall come home with shouts of joy, bringing his sheaves with him.
From there we visited two pastors, Shaban and Llir, in Elbasan. Shaban has started a church after sharing the gospel at the school he and his wife started. Llir runs a small church that has existed for a number of years and Llir, a church planter, works with Roma people. We’re able to listen to their history and current challenges and pray for each of them.
We also walked the via Egnatia where it is expected to have run. It was a joyful reflection to think that Paul may have walked this area almost 2,000 years ago.
Before driving back to Durres we returned to Kristian’s home for a wonderful meal, were introduced to his team, and shared testimonies. It was a Spirit filled afternoon and their sacrifices for advancing the Gospel served as an example for all of us.
Prayer Request for Kristian: successful harvest and sold produce that will support his family for over 6 months and a second planting. Health for his family and growth of leadership numbers to advance the gospel and establish more home groups.
For the other pastors: leadership development, financial soundness and multiplication of churches.
Thanks for praying with us!