Orphans, Handicapped & Village Ministries
many societies today, orphans, the handicapped, and people considered
to be of a ‘lesser' race, which is a common opinion about the Gypsy or
Roma people amongst Albanians, are looked down upon, neglected, and not
cared for. These kinds of attitudes are completely contrary to those
that Jesus Christ says we are to have, so at the Stephen Center we strive
to show the love of Jesus to these people by providing for their physical
needs as well as teaching them about a personal relationship with Jesus.
We have realized that the love of Jesus is best displayed when we are “doers” of
His Word and allow His love to be seen through our actions.
Over the years the Stephen Center has been greatly involved in providing for orphans and orphanages.
Along with giving financial support to orphanages, we have given clothes, shoes and other items needed on a regular basis,
and even gifts during the Christmas season.
There are very few opportunities available to Albanian orphans, so the Stephen
Center Restaurant has employed many teenagers from the local orphanages in
The Triumphant Life Church in the southern Albanian town of Saranda has ministered
to the orphanage in their city for years, playing games with the children and
leading Bible studies for them. Many of the children from the Sarande orphanage
attend the Triumphant Life Church alongside many other children from the community.
Orphans are in need of so much love. Most of them have been neglected by their
birth families, and many do not receive the full love and attention that children
need at the orphanages where they live. You would be amazed if you could see
how much love the Triumphant Life Church gives these kids and how much the
orphans the church in return!
Magdalena Malarveeli Valoo, the former missionary/pastor of the Triumphant Life
Church in Saranda, in May of 2004 moved to the capital city, Tirane , and began
a new ministry in the government-run orphanage. The director of all the government-run
orphanages in Albania , met with Magdalena because she has heard of the great
success Magdalena had in ministering to the orphanage in Sarande, and asked her
to begin a work in the orphanage in Tirane .
THE GYPSY (ROMA) PEOPLE OF ALBANIA
DISABLED CENTER - New Life Center ( Qendra Jeta e Re)
While Chris and Laura were traveling through Albania, they noticed the
many disabled people peddling for money on the sides of the streets and they
realized the great need to do something for them. Together with co-director, Josif
Paparisto, they had started to develop a program, which would train and assist disabled young people and orphans to find jobs and get better integrated into everyday
society. Because there is little government aid for these people, something needed to
be done to provide a positive future beyond begging for money. This training and rehabilitation
center will give them the opportunity to have a profitable self-sufficient future.
It is the prayer of the Stephen Center that enough resources will be raised to
begin this project within the foreseeable future!
Flash!!!!! The Disabled Center has been OPENED! In October, 2014, during our 20 Year Anniversary Celebration, we dedicated the New Life Center! In January, 2015, after equipping the clinic part, we OPENED the Center and began receiving kids in need.
We have three dedicated Albanian ladies now working at New Life and love helping the children. A therapist, a nurse and a coodinator. Our wheelchair van, with a lift, can hold up to 4-5 wheelchairs. We pick up the kids and at present, we are open 4 days a week and have 4-10 young people that are receiving FREE treatment. Our building has three exam rooms and an exercise room , as well as a parent reception area and a kitchen that we use to cook lunches for the children. Your prayers for these young children are needed as well as hearts to be opened to help support this Center that will change lives. Your support financially and prayers will bring blessings to many who are without hope. Thank you on behalf of those that you give to.