Operation Christmas Child

Albania

Location: Southeastern Europe, between Greece to the south and Montenegro and Kosovo to the north

Population: 3,074,579, with 18% under the age of 15 (source – CIA The World Factbook)

Thank you for bringing Good News and great joy to a child living in Albania. Your shoebox gift was one of 28,991 sent to Albania from the UK this season.

We thank God for the thousands of children that have received shoeboxes here since Operation Christmas Child began distributions. While we are not able to provide pictures or information on the specific child who received your individual shoebox, we hope you will be inspired by the photos and stories below.

Stories From Our Local Partners In Albania

“Greetings to you from Albania, It has been a blessing for us to be able to share in the UK about the Operation Christmas Child project in our country and how it has been a blessing for many kids coming to know Christ.”

Local ministry partners in one district held an Operation Christmas Child outreach event at a centre for children with additional needs. They said:

“Even though many of the children could not talk, we saw the joy in their eyes as God’s love was delivered with the shoeboxes. The children hugged their shoeboxes, and their teachers thanked the church. Both the adults and the children heard the message of God’s love.”

Another member of the National Leadership Team shared about how his wife had met a little boy called Dionis, who was five years old and had autism. She recalled:

“He loved his shoebox so much that he said, ‘when I grow up, I would like to find and thank that good person who sent me such a good gift’.”

 

The Greatest Journey

One partner reported that there were many classes of The Greatest Journey taking place in different schools during the winter, but in the spring, Covid-19 meant schools closed, and with them, The Greatest Journey classes.  During the lockdown the teachers and children used the time to invite more families. As a result, when the restrictions were lifted, even more children were able to take part in The Greatest Journey than before!

They also shared about ten-year-old Mariglena:

“Mariglena lives in a very small Roma community. She was abandoned by her parents and lives with her grandparents. Since the very first meeting, Mariglena listened attentively, absorbing every single word shared and always arriving to class before the other children. After many weeks, she accepted Jesus into her heart and her eyes were visibly bright with joy.  

 

Suddenly, in the first week of March, due to Covid-19, The Greatest Journey meetings could no longer be held as a full group. The teacher split the children into four small groups (usually with relatives or neighbours) and continued to teach them. Mariglena could not stop talking about Jesus and encouraged her friends to learn more and pray together. Many of her friends were not able to read, so she would read to them. As a result of Mariglena’s enthusiasm, many children in the community were able to complete the course and hear of God’s love for them.”

Mariglena with her TGJ Bible

Mariglena with her The Greatest Journey book

Albie's shoebox

Our Local Partners

Operation Christmas Child invests in building National Leadership Teams made up of trained local volunteers and staff within over 100 countries. These teams then work alongside many Regional Leadership Teams who in turn train local church leaders and teachers. In Albania four teams are working with 93 ministry partners (teams of volunteers in local churches) to make Operation Christmas Child and The Greatest Journey possible each year!

 

Thank You

Thank you so much for packing a shoebox gift and sending love and hope to a child in need. Your generosity makes such a difference!