Albanian elections have Christians on their knees

By June 30, 2005

Albania (MNN) — With national elections looming in Albania a Christian ministry is uniting Christians in prayer. Former President Sali Berisha (sah-LEE bah-RIH-sha) is running again. Berisha was president when the country descended into anarchy in 1997 after the collapse of a pyramid investment scheme. He was forced to resign.

Trans World Radio has been working in Albania since 2003 and they’ve become the link to evangelical church around the country. TWR Executive Director in Albania is Enkelejda (en-kar-lay-da) Kumaraku. She’s hoping Berisha is defeated. “During that time we had no freedom of speech. We had no free newspapers. Many journalists were in prison for saying the truth about the President and the government.”

TWR is producing radio programs for the Albanian people. Kumaraku says these are needed. “The church is very young and (have) big needs (for) good spiritual food.”

As the elections take place Sunday, TWR is doing everything they can to have an impact. “We strongly decided to go before God and organize a time of fasting and prayer for many months now. And, this last week, we have been (holding) four hours of prayer and fasting all around the country, and TWR has been organizing this.”

They also have been airing programs that coincide with this prayer time. Kumaraku says it will all culminate on election eve. “We’ll have (a) big national prayer meeting organized July the 2nd and a prayer night, all night. Believers from all around the country will come together and humble ourselves before God and just leaving everything that is happening in our nation in God’s hands.”

TWR’s programming has had an impact on non-Christian listeners, says Kumaraku. “Speaking all of it on the air, we have seen it strongly impact Albanian unbelievers. We have a lot of unbelievers listening to the message and we’re waiting for some of them to be a part of our national gathering July 2nd so, we’re all hoping some of them will come to the Lord.”

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