New Families Find Hope in Kosovo

Women and children, many from Muslim families, gather at the church in Teuta’s support group.

May 2024 – Pastor Urim Zogaj and his wife Teuta  lead the MP ministry in Kosovo. They pastor the church, Teuta leads a women’s support group, Urim teaches English, and they regularly visit sponsored families. As Kosovo is culturally Muslim, women have a very difficult time to raise their children if they are divorced or widows. This newsletter highlights a few of the stories of our newest families in need of sponsorship.

Sponsor A Family
A Single Mother Valbona Gegaj

Valbona is reserved, careful, but quietly desperate. She only recently heard about Mercy Projects from the local municipality office, who suggested maybe the Christians would help her and her 11 year old daughter Vjosa.

Valbona and Vjosa are grateful.

Four years ago her husband divorced her to go live with another woman. She was abandoned with her 7-year-old daughter and life has been a struggle ever since. Today, however, Valbona and her daughter have hope.

Six weeks ago Valbona met with pastor Urim’s wife Teuta. Since that time, she has eagerly attended the women’s support meetings and actively takes part in group discussions. Vjosa, now 11 years old, is sweet but very quiet. She loves attending English classes and has started opening up. She insists on being there every week. She misses her dad, but she is excited to make new friends.

The city of Malisheve provides them with a free apartment and $110 per month, which is not enough to buy groceries and pay expenses. The MP Family Sponsorship Program provides families like this with $66 of monthly groceries plus opportunities for counseling and mentoring at the local church

Luljeta Begs For Food For Her Family

No heat, no running water. They need our help.

Luljeta is married with four children.  She heard about Mercy Projects a few weeks ago at the local grocery store. She was there begging for help to feed her children and the manager gave her pastor Urim’s number.  Urim said yes, in faith, that we could feed this family. The husband is sick and cannot work. She

is strong, but there are no jobs for women in her small village. Simply put, this family is desperate, and mom begs door to door for scraps for her children.  They do not qualify for social assistance since they have a house and the kids are older then five years of age.

The husband Lumni has problems with his spine and prostate. They are a loving family and pastor Urim recently shared:

“They are really in a tough situation but we know God does miracles. If our sponsors will pray for them, we really appreciate it.”


Leonora and Her Son Escaped Husband’s Abuse

Leonora was married just three years when she plotted her escape with her young son Argjend. As is the Muslim tradition in Kosovo, a woman leaves her family and becomes the possession of her husband.  Their children rightfully belong to the husband’s family but not to the wife.

Luljeta begged for food for her family.

“Life became impossible for me,” said Leonora. “My husband would not care anymore for me or my baby boy and for no reason he would just come home and hit me. His family would hit me as well.”

“I was afraid that he would kill me, so I asked for a divorce and asked if I could keep my boy.”

Leonora and Argjend now attend classes.

Her husband did not resist and allowed her to move away peacefully. Three years ago the city of Malisheve provided a small apartment for her and a monthly stipend of $110. She and Argjend are barely surviving and asked if they could qualify for the Mercy Projects Sponsorship Program.  Mother and son are very quiet, but 13-year-old Argjend enjoys coming to English classes. Urim has asked for prayer for Leonora to open up and learn to trust women at the support group with Teuta.

Sponsors Provide Hope for Families in Kosovo

A family sponsorship is $29 per month. Three sponsors are needed for each family ($87). A sponsorship not only feeds a family, but it helps local missionaries like pastor Urim to build bridges to people in the surrounding Muslim community.

We stepped out in faith and to help these families.