Tricia King – UK
Albania Prayer Team Trip (14-20 February) Seven of us from New Life Church in Tunbridge Wells, UK, went to visit Colin and Elida and their church in Shkoder, Albania. We loved joining in with various church activities but our primary focus was prayer. We began with a prayer walk around the town and continued the week praying in key places. It was brilliant to have time to pray with individuals.
A highlight was when we went up to the castle to look out over the town. Colin helpfully pointed out things to pray for and we prayed with persistence. The town is split into Muslim and Catholic sides, with areas for Travellers and a separate space for those involved in feuds – where the men dare not leave their homes.The religious spires and towers are vying to be the tallest but the mountain peaks behind them reminded us that nothing can match God’s incredible creation. It is a beautiful area with one of Europe’s largest lakes close by.
We were also able to spend an evening praying with a church plant in a nearby town. Being in Albania helped us to understand the prayer needs. We saw the fearful reminder, in the town centre prison museum, of the atrocities of communism and their attempt to stamp out any religion, so it was very special to hear stories of how God guided and led some of the first believers, after the fall of communism.
It was a privilege to be with the church on Sunday morning and they made us very welcome.
Gdansk Prayer Team Trip (10-13 March) Eleven church members went on our second Gdansk team, ranging in ages from eighteen to seventy plus! The team appreciated getting to know Kevin and Emma, spending time with Grono church, and time with each others too.
Our first prayer walk was around the local area (in the freezing cold), with thoughtful stops along the route. The first of these was by the river with lock gates. As someone prayed that God would open the floodgates of blessing on Gdansk, the lock gate slowly started to open until it was fully open. Emma had never seen it open before! We prayed on the roof of the Lech Walesa Museum, looking out over the city, after learning about the fall of communism which began in Gdansk. It was sobering especially in the light of current world events.
Our highlight has to be meeting with Grono Church on Sunday morning. We just about squeezed into Kevin and Emma’s apartment and, after eating breakfast together, we worshipped and enjoyed God’s presence. Everyone was keen to learn more about the Holy Spirit, and then there was prayer for people to be filled with the Holy Spirit.
Albania and Poland were carried home in the hearts of the team members. With new friendships and first hand experience, we know that each one will continue praying. Our church in Tunbridge Wells loves to hear feedback from our trips as this stirs others to want to come on future trips and this helps keep prayer for the Balkan nations and the Lighthouse community high on our agenda.
Thank you so much Colin, Elida, Kevin and Emma.