Our time in Elbasan flew by way too quickly!
Sunday was very similar to last Sunday, where we led the Roma church service again. At 4, we had the kids program, where we did a skit, told a story and made a craft. At 5, we had the adult service, where we did another skit, and shared testimonies. It also happened to be one of our trainee’s birthday, as well as one of the attendees, so we prayed over them at the end of the service.
One of the local Roma women helped lead the church service
Praying for the birthday people
Crafts with the kids
Crafts with the kids
Monday to Friday morning was also very similar to last week, we opened the gate around 10:45, and the kids would play volleyball and other games until about 11:45, when they would brush their teeth and wash their hands before going inside for the Feeding Program. They would all leave by about 1:00ish. One day this week though, we decided to have some fun with them, and organized some games – it was organized chaos! But fun!
Trying to get the kids into 2 lines
Explaining the game
Blowing up the balloon until it pops!
Some kids wanted to learn some English, so one of our trainees taught them some words
Kids in the feeding program
One of the kids carrying the food in
Some of the kids
In the afternoons this week, we did some of the same stuff as last week. One day, we went to a house owned by a local Christian university, played volleyball with the students and staff, shared testimonies, did a skit and shared a short message. One two other occasions, we had the opportunity to go on home visits, meet some of the local families and hear their stories. Home visits were one of my main highlights of my time in Elbasan! In one home we visited, there were 5 generations living there, and the great-grandmother was only 54!
Volleyball with the students
Explaining the skit
Sharing his testimony
One family I had the privilege to meet twice
They even prayed for me!
A mother we were able to meet - she has 6 kids, from a few months old up until 15!
Another family some of the trainees were able to meet
Just because we didn't slot a time to meet with families doesn't mean we still can't meet with them at any other time - on our way back from somewhere, we were able to have a chat with this boy's family (our neighbours) by the fire!
On Thursday we took the morning off from the kids program, and went on a hike up the ‘mountain’ (a really large hill!). At the top, we were able to explore some former military tunnels, and spend some time looking around.
Emerging from the tunnel!
The group! We survived!
Lunch in the field
Friday evening we went out for dinner as a team in a former castle, and walked around the downtown area! Afterwards, we went to the base leader’s house to say our goodbyes and spend some time with them. It was a nice last night in Elbasan!
Entering the castle
The group at dinner
Candy Floss on the main street! Super cheap for tons of it!
Saturday morning, we packed up, finished cleaning, and headed back to Durrës, and we’ll be there for 1 more week!
Last breakfast in Elbasan!
- Energy! Elbasan was great, but took a lot out of us! We still have 3 more weeks of outreach (1 week here, 2 weeks in Cambridge), and need energy to keep going!
- Direction as to what to do with our remaining time in Albania, and the two weeks in Cambridge