2020 was a year full of surprises. When we heard the international news about a new virus in China, we did not worry too much, think-ing that we were protected because of the long physical distance. But when we had just finished the week of teaching at ISTL last March, we received the news that Covid 19 had also arrived in Albania. Immediately we were forced to enter a total quarantine. We only had 3 weeks before the next course in April.
It was very unsure situation for us: “How would we continue our teaching mission in such conditions?”. Our staff gathered in a virtual meeting, prayed and decided to continue teaching via the Zoom platform. When we made this decision, we did not realize that God had big plans and new territories to achieve using this situation.
As the apostle Paul says in the Epistle to the Romans chapter 8 verse 28: “… all things work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose”.
Since April when we first offered online teaching parallel to inperson teaching, ISTL has doubled the number of students who en-rolled in the first year. We found it reasonable to invest in this direction by making it possible for Online Learning and classroom interaction.
Now ISTL, in addition to the School in Tirana, has 2 other learning centers. One in the city of Korca and one in Katjel, Perrenjas. We have students from different cities in Albania, but also students from Kosovo and Greece have joined online. What we aim for 2021 is the launch of the Moodle Platform for Continuing Online Teaching, the Mentoring of students we have in all centers and the start of the Accreditation Process.
From everything that has happened and we have gone through, we can say with full conviction that God is EMANUEL, God with us.
He is our hope.