Short Albanian History

“We are the world’s first atheistic nation!”

So claimed Albania’s communist dictator, Enver Hoxha in 1967. He ruled the country with an iron grip until his death in 1985.

By the early 90’s the evangelical church in this small Eastern European country had been reduced to five old men meeting secretly for prayer and Bible study.

In 1991, Albania held its first democratic elections and the Albanian people welcomed evangelical teams from outside; people hungrily thronging to hear a little about the God of love they had been denied.

Over the last decades, God has been growing His church in this small country of three and a half million people. Today, in this land where Paul and Titus walked, there is a church in every major city, and many people young and old have turned to Christ.

Albania’s flag has a double-headed eagle. Some have said that this stands for Albania’s position between the east and the west. The “Land of the Eagle” is looking towards the West, but also has a very Eastern flavor.

Albania is among the poorest countries of Europe and Eastern Europe. In the midst of that poverty, people are looking for answers.

Bible School activities will include coming alongside local churches as they reach out to receptive villages in the fastest growing nation in Europe. Albania has more children than any other country in Europe. Thus many children and young people are looking for purpose in life.

For more country information check out www.lonelyplanet.com/albania.