This summer has been really busy: we’ve been involved with mission teams, a project to distribute water with an evangelical message and preparations for the church’s 10th anniversary celebrations at the beginning of September. But by far the most anticipated activity this summer was the youth camp. Our original plan as a church was to go on camp at the beginning of July but due to limited finances and wedding season here in Kosova we had to push the dates back to the end of August. Continue reading “Youth Camp 2017”
The summer in Kosova is very hot with temperatures up to 40ºC. Because Kosova is surrounded by mountains it’s like living in a bowl, the heat is concentrated inside the bowl and there’s no breeze. Dehydration can be a big problem in the summer and in August we got involved in a project started by a church group in the capital, Prishtina, Water of Hope (Uji i Shpresës). Continue reading “Water of Hope Project”
We love worship and it is very much part of our everyday lives as well as something we lead at church. When Ilir was asked to take over as worship leader in 2014 he was nervous about being a worship leader because he didn’t think he could sing well enough or play the guitar very well (his preferred instrument is the bass guitar). When he asked me to join the worship group in 2015 I felt very much the same way about playing the piano, but God has equipped us both and continues to lead us as we lead worship at our church Kisha Rilindja e Kosovës. We are blessed that we also have three other members of the worship group who each bring different gifts and a passion for worship.*
On Saturday we were asked to lead worship at a small church in Deçan, a town just over 20km from Gjakovë. Continue reading “Leading Worship in Deçan”
One of our favourite parts of being members of Kisha Rilindja e Kosovës (Rebirth of Kosova Church) is that we get to meet people from all over the world who have the same desire and passion to see the church in Kosova grow as we do. Throughout the year we get requests as a church to host teams from other countries for conferences or outreach projects.
In August we hosted a team from Italy who were in Kosova for the first time as part of Tour Giallo, or “Yellow Tour”. The team were from a large church in Milan, Italy and many of them are students of the Church’s own Bible school. Tour Giallo is an evangelism project to reach people throughout Europe. Continue reading “Tour Giallo”
Last year, the worship group from our church, Kisha Rilindja e Kosovës, led the worship at the joint Easter Sunday service in Gjakovë (Read more: Urime Pashka – Happy Easter). For joint services each of the 6 churches in Gjakovë takes turns in providing the worship, drama, preaching and welcome, so this year our church is providing the drama. During the Christmas Day service at our church the youth performed “The Life of Jesus”, a mime taking only 6 minutes. At Christmas the message of the drama was that we shouldn’t focus only on Jesus’ birth but on His birth as the starting point of His life, ministry, death and resurrection.
We’ve been practising all week with the youth to perform the same drama at the Cultural Palace on Sunday afternoon.
Last weekend we went with the Youth of the church for the second year in a row to clean up the park area near to our church. You can see the pictures and read about this initiative from last year in our blog post Ta Pastrojmë Gjakovën – Clean Up Gjakovë. Last year we collected 8 sacks of rubbish from a small area just across the road from our church and this year we collected 7 so there is perhaps a gradual improvement taking place.
This is something I’ve been thinking about for a while now. Over the past 3 years or so I have relied on people to translate/interpret for me on an almost daily basis. Although my grasp of Albanian is much improved from what it was originally I still need help sometimes. Most of the time it’s Ilir who does this, but not always, and I’ve noticed something… translators/interpreters hardly ever get thanked for what they do. Continue reading “5 Reasons You Should Always Thank Your Translator”
Regular readers of our blog or prayer letters will know that we organise a couple’s dinner once a month at our church where we can get together and discuss what it means to have a Christian marriage. Normally each couple brings some food and we share a meal together followed by a discussion and dessert. This month, instead of our normal couple’s dinner we all attended a marriage seminar hosted by another Gjakovë church. Continue reading “Marriage Seminar”
Wow, what a week. We have been on the go non-stop since 7th March when we spent the day preparing for International Women’s Day which is on 8th March every year. As a church we decided to hold a special event for women, young and old, to celebrate this day and invited a guest speaker to come and speak on the theme “Hope in the midst of difficulty”. Continue reading “8th March 2017”
Today marks the 9th anniversary of Kosova’s Independence, which reminds you how young this country really is. Most capital cities have monuments and statues depicting the history of the country and it’s famous inhabitants, leaders and warriors, Kosova has all of those but also has a monument which is unique. Continue reading “Urime 9 Vjet Pavarësi!”
“Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth.
Worship the Lord with gladness;
come before him with joyful songs.“
Psalm 100:1-2 (NIV)
You know the drill: Sunday morning comes, you go to church, find your favourite seat, greet others in the church, the Pastor/Minister/Vicar opens the service with a Bible verse about the goodness of God or the importance of giving Him our worship. The worship leader (probably wearing a checked shirt) starts strumming away on their guitar, singing songs that you’ve sung 100 times before or, even worse, a song that you’ve never heard of before. So you stand there feeling awkward while the worship team play and sing as if they’re in Wembley Stadium with an audience of 90,000.
Sound at all familiar? Continue reading “Worshipping when you don’t feel like worshipping”