TACO Albania Spring - Prayer update #3
May 7, 2015
Monday, our show was in an area just outside Tirane where there was a huge and horrible explosion in 2008 destroying hundreds of homes and buildings, killing 26 people and injuring over 300. You can read more about it here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2008_G%C3%ABrdec_explosions. There was a church in this area before the tragedy but not since. One of the former church members died in the explosion.
Our show was outside a cafe for a very small but enthusiastic and polite audience. A local church planter hosted our event and used it to announce the launch of a new church plant starting this coming Wednesday at a building nearby which was the first to be rebuilt in the area. Such a privilege to be part of the start of a church where one hasn't existed in 7 years!
The pastor wrapped up our show by singing a few Albanian songs of his own. Sabre and a few others from the audience burst into Albanian dancing while he sang. A few guys from our team bravely and humorously jumped in and attempted the fancy steps. Afterward, the pastor blessed everyone on our team with gifts of his CD. Sam connected with a bunch of Albanian guys with his few Albanian phrases and found himself included in a card game in the cafe.
Please pray that many will attend the church meeting on Wednesday in the area where we just presented.
Tomorrow we leave Tirane for a few days and head south. Pray for safe travels and prepared hearts for those we'll share with in Berat and Kuchova the next two days. In Berat, a church was planted as a result of TACO's previous visit. That church has now planted two other churches!
Me Shprese (With Hope),
TACO Albania team
TACO Albania Spring - Prayer update #1
May 6, 2015
Happy May Day! It's a holiday here in Albania so we have a day off to rehearse and rest.
Our team arrived in Tirane Albania on Tuesday, March 28. We consist of: Dave from Turkey (TACO director) leading the team and herding kids at shows, Chris (American from Istanbul TACO team) running sound and singing, the Aussie band Sam (keys and vocals), Paul (guitar and vocals), Jarred (guitar and vocals), Lauren (drums and vocals) and Nevel (guitar, vocals, harmonica); Dustin (unicycling) and Katie (dancing) from America; and Sabre (Albanian pastor/church planter) our local organizer.
It was not the best welcome to arrive and learn that our amp that we've stored here has gone missing and all Dustin's wooden structures that he uses for the obstacle course part of his show were left out in the rain and rotted.
Wednesday, March 29 was a rehearsal day and yesterday, Thursday was our first show in a poor neighborhood in Tirane. This area has a new, small church plant with about 30 people led by a Roma couple. The show was a good dress rehearsal as we put all the elements together. We performed in a smooth surface, fenced-in basketball court in the center of an apartment block. The majority of our audience (which gathered the minute we unloaded and started setting up) was very rambunctious kids. Dave's kid corralling skills came in very handy, as the kids were everywhere and very hard to contain. We tried to keep them behind a rope to create a "stage" area but they kept come through holes in the fence elsewhere. Basketballs flew into the band a few times as they were performing, one even hitting Nevel and knocking his guitar pick out of his hand.
But, despite the chaos, more than 20 people of all ages visually responded to the Gospel message and invitation to follow Jesus! Lots of Bibles and other material were handed out to the eager crowd. Sabre was very happy with the results and said our efforts were not in vain. He said he's heard many reports of kids leading their parents to Christ. The kids take the Bibles and literature home, ask their parents to read it to them, the parents end up hearing the truth and turning to Jesus. A couple men connected with Sabre after the show and are planning on attending the church.
Unfortunately, since the show last night, 3 of our mics have gone missing. It was super crazy packing up after the show so we're not sure what happened to them. You could pray that they are found! Also pray for the seeds planted last night and for the upcoming 11 days of outreach we have ahead of us! Thanks!
Me Shprese (With Hope),
TACO Albania team
October 16, 2014
Two of our team members are in the US to speak at Moody Bible Institute's missions conference - in fact, they led a hip hop outreach yesterday in Chicago! Pray for them as they lead seminars today and ask God to challenge creative artists there to reach the Muslim world for Him.
One wheel, one message
September 23, 2014
We're currently on tour with our unicycling friends! GREAT outreaches in two cities so far, with hundreds in attendance. We've also seen hundreds of More Than Dreams DVDs go out, a resource we love. It's 5 testimonies of 5 Muslims who have come to Christ through a dream or vision - powerful stories - pray they cause wonder.
The last two days we've been in a city where there are few believers but the ones here are eager to meet others who want to know more about Jesus. We have lots of contacts for them! Pray for fruit.
Tomorrow's an 8 hour drive to the southwest where we've been supporting a new church plant. Thanks for your prayers for us troubadours for the King!
It's the small things
September 10, 2014
We currently have an outreach happening in Albania. It started rocky when it appeared some local relationships were strained. Another organisation had come in much better funded - and generous in spreading that funding about - and so our local organisers were disgruntled at what it was costing them to host us.
But we see God giving breakthroughs in the weather, in relationships and in fruit! Our team leader reports:
"Today we went to a small village called Mucoj. They had expected a large crowd to come but not many showed up. In spite of the small crowd, though, the pastor there and our organizers all were pretty excited about the show. They said that even though the crowd was small they had a good amount of interest. They said that it seemed like everyone there wanted more information and for someone to meet with them more to talk about Jesus. Sabri encouraged by saying, “Don’t look at the size of the crowd, look at the quality of the crowd. Last night’s crowd were few but of very good quality in interest.”
Pray that many of those showing interest would come to faith - already we have seen several churches planted across Albania as a result of small, creative shows that preach the Gospel clearly.