CLICK HERE for Country Information and History

Area: (slightly smaller than Maryland) total: 28,748 sq km (11,100 sq miles), land: 27,398 sq km (10,578 sq miles), water: 1,350 sq km (521 sq miles)

Population: 3,038,594 (July 2016 est.)

Population growth rate: 0.31% (2016 est.)

Capital City: Tirana

Independence Day: 28 November 1912 (from the Ottoman Empire)

Ethnic Groups: Albanian 82.6%, Greek 0.9%, other 1% (including Vlach, Roma (Gypsy), Macedonian, Montenegrin, and Egyptian), unspecified 15.5% (2011 est.)

Languages: Albanian 98.8% (official – derived from Tosk dialect), Greek 0.5%, other 0.6% (including Macedonian, Roma, Vlach, Turkish, Italian, and Serbo-Croatian), unspecified 0.1% (2011 est.)

Life Expectancy at Birth: total population: 78.3 years / male: 75.7 / female: 81.2 years (2016 est.)

Religious Groups:

  • Muslim 56.7%
  • Roman Catholic 10%
  • Orthodox 6.8%
  • atheist 2.5%
  • Bektashi (a Sufi order) 2.1%
  • other 5.7%
  • unspecified 16.2%

Note: All mosques and churches were closed in 1967 and religious observances prohibited; in November 1990, Albania began allowing private religious practice (2011 est.)

Albania declared its independence from the Ottoman Empire in 1912, but was conquered by Italy in 1939 and occupied by Germany in 1943. Communist partisans took over the country in 1944. Albania allied itself first with the USSR (until 1960), and then with China (to 1978). In the early 1990s, Albania ended 46 years of xenophobic communist rule and established a multiparty democracy. The transition has proven challenging as successive governments have tried to deal with high unemployment, widespread corruption, dilapidated infrastructure, powerful organized crime networks, and combative political opponents.

Albania has made progress in its democratic development since first holding multiparty elections in 1991, but deficiencies remain. Most of Albania’s post-communist elections were marred by claims of electoral fraud; however, international observers judged elections to be largely free and fair since the restoration of political stability following the collapse of pyramid schemes in 1997. Albania joined NATO in April 2009 and in June 2014 became a candidate for EU accession. Albania in November 2016 received a European Commission recommendation to open EU accession negotiations conditioned upon implementation of a judicial reform package passed the same year. Although Albania’s economy continues to grow, it has slowed, and the country is still one of the poorest in Europe. A large informal economy and an inadequate energy and transportation infrastructure remain obstacles.

(SOURCE: The CIA Factbook provides information on the history, people, government, economy, energy, geography, communications, transportation, military, and transnational issues for 267 world entities.)

EEMN Serving in Albania

EEMN is now officially serving in Albania! While not technically a former Soviet Bloc nation, the Balkan country of Albania suffered the same devastating effects of atheistic communist rule. Additionally, most Albanians identify culturally as Muslim. This means that few actually practice neither the religion of their cultural identity nor any religion, at all. This means the harvest is plentiful and (thanks be to God) we now have laborers in the field!
Dan and Dawn Hall are working in Peshkopi, Albania, along with Isaac and Elizabeth, who are the two youngest of their six children. The Halls spent two years helping to establish the first private school in Peshkopi, which is a village in the remote, east central mountain region of Albania.

The Halls have now transitioned to working with the only Christian church in Peshkopi, assisting husband and wife, Pastor Ermal and Sarah Lushi, 
with leadership and disciple making. Out of the town population of about 20,000 there are less than 75 Christians.
pastors-meetingAs both Dan and Dawn have extensive administrative and professional education experience, they are also helping start a new school in the capital city of Tirana, Albania. Nearly all private schools in Albania teach in English and are fairly expensive for most Albanians.
It is the hope of many parents that an education in English will help their children to leave the country for better opportunities elsewhere. teaching-time-2This new school is unique in that it has the vision to serve primarily Christian families, teach in Albanian, be affordable for a typical Albanian family, and ultimately raise a generation of educated believers who stay in Albania to serve as “salt and light” in their own community!
Dan and Dawn are helping to train teachers and administrators in more creative and innovative educational methods not typically practiced in Albania
Please pray for the Halls as these ministries develop. Pray also for the people of Albania, as there is so much need in this poor country that it is often difficult to stay focused on only where God is having them serve.
The Halls are actively raising funds for regular support of their ministry in Albania. If you are interested in helping support them, click on this link: or you can also give by visiting the EEMN Support page!