How our Albanian literature is produced

We often report in the Newsletter on new books being produced in Albanian, and maybe you sometimes wonder just what the process is. It runs rather like this:

  1. The Board of AEM Misioni Ungjillor consider ideas for new books suggested by missionaries or Albanian workers.
  2. If the idea is well received in Albania and/or Kosova, a book is written or an already existing book in English on the theme is chosen, after consultation with AEM’s trustees.
  3. This is sent to Albania for translation. We always use a native speaker, with a good knowledge of English.
  4. The translation comes back to Wrexham, and the Director compares it with the original English to ensure that the translator has not misunderstood any of the English. Possibly errors might be along the lines of Psalm 18.33 "He made my feet like hinds’ feet" which was translated as "back legs"; or the well-known problem of sentences like the entomologist’s (insect-expert’s) "Fruit flies like a banana" as against the philosopher’s "Time flies like an arrow." Even punctuation or typing errors can confuse: God is nowhere; God is now here.
  5. Once an Albanian version is achieved which is an accurate rendering of the English, it goes to a literary editor - an educated Albanian who reads it as a book, to see whether it reads smoothly and not like something translated from a foreign language by a foreigner - like the instructions for certain Japanese electrical appliances, which remain incomprehensible even though they are in "English". Some translators are known to be so good that this stage can be omitted.
  6. The native-sounding Albanian text is then printed separately in Albania and Kosova (for they are separate countries, and this avoids problems with import). This is arranged in Albania by Xhelo Palushi and in Kosova by Pastor Femi Cakolli.
  7. The books are then stored in Gjirokastër and Prishtina, and from there sold, always at a loss, or given away. They should go at least to churches, missionaries, Christian bookshops, book fairs, pastors, libraries. Selling them at a price to Albanians who are willing or able to pay gives them some psychological value for the buyers, otherwise they are likely to be thrown away or used as wrapping paper or worse (though we are happy to give Gospel literature free to unbelievers).
  8. The trustees decided long ago not to produce any more small tracts or pamphlets; we now always produce books.

All this is paid for from AEM’s general fund. It is important to emphasise this. We question the wisdom of statements such as we hear sometimes from churches or individuals along the lines of "We support people, not missions." First of all, what do missions consist of, if not people trying to serve God, who need to live? and secondly, if all giving is designated for the personal support of specified individual workers and their own ministry, there is nothing for wider work such as publishing Christian literature and various other ventures which aim to advance the gospel. As regards literature, money is necessary to pay for the time required for writing, translating, editing, proof-reading and printing; the journeys, the research, the materials; the office equipment and storage space.

 

Here is a list of the literature we had produced by the end of last year:

Asgjë tjetër nuk ka rëndësi for teenagers

Dyfish i çliruar for teenagers

Kam dashur një vajzë (with Shigjeta & Tenda) for teenagers

Bektashinjtë edhe Krishti for/about specific sect/religion

Ç’është Mormonizmi? for/about specific sect/religion

Dallimet kryesore në mes Islamizmit dhe Krishti for/about specific sect/religion

Paralajmërim mbi Dëshmitarët e Jehovait for/about specific sect/religion (tract)

Feja baha’i for/about specific sect/religion (tract)

Në Frymë dhe në të Vërtetën for/about specific sect/religion

Përgjigjet për Dëshmitarët e Jehovait for/about specific sect/religion

Besimtarë përgjithmonë doctrinal - eternal security (Owen) G

Dashtë Perëndia doctrinal - providence (Flavel) G

Fjala 1 seminar teaching

Fjala 2 seminar teaching

Shpallja e drejtësisë doctrinal - justification (Buchanan) G

Të lindur skllevër doctrinal - bondage of will (Luther) G

Të Lindurit sërish doctrinal - the new birth (Mike Brown)

Besimtari dhe Bibla tract

Cila kishë shptëton? tract

Kisha e vërtetë tract

Krishterimi? Islamizmi? tract

Pagëzim’ i krishter tract (baptism)

Zëvëndësi im tract

Çfarë ndodh kur lutem? devotional - prayer G

Delet e mia e dëgjojnë zërin tim devotional - guidance

Dhjetë Shishe Qumësht devotional - early growth in Christian life

Hyrje në jetë devotional - conversion (Doddridge) G

Jeta e brendshme e besimtarit devotional - inner life (O. Winslow) G

Kujdes me Biblën devotional - about the Bible (S. Ferguson)

Kundërshto Djallin devotional - resist the Devil G

Mesazhi i Jobit devotional - Job

Përse nuk ndërhyn Perëndia? devotional - why doesn’t God intervene?

Qëndroni (Rrini) te patundur devotional - stand firm (Peter Jeffery)

Si të çlirohemi prej hidhërimit devotional - freedom from bitterness

Si të jetojmë të lumtur (Xhevahiri...) devotional - contentment (Burroughs) G

Siguria devotional - assurance (Brooks) G

Të Ecurit me Perëndinë devotional - walk with God (Ryle) G

Të jetojmë me Perëndinë e gjallë (J Owen, G Smeaton)* devotional G

Dritë në mbrëmje devotional readings (Ælfric)

Kallinj nga duajt... devotional readings (Philpot)

Fjala e Zotit erdhi në Korçë history (God’s work among Albanians)

Ne erdhëm në Kosovë history (God’s work among Albanians)

Zgjim shpirtëror history (God’s work among Albanians)

Zjarr në Toskëri history (God’s work among Albanians)

Rrugë (Shtigje) biblike në Shqipërinë e vjetër history (God’s work among Albanians)

Ungjilli ndër Shqiptarët history (God’s work among Albanians)

Ungjilli në Shqipëri history (God’s work among Albanians)

Guxoj të qëndro i vetëm (Daniel) commentary

Të Lirë në Krishtin (Galatians) commentary

Ungjilli ashtu si është në vërtetë (Romans) commentary

Kisha ungjillore apologetic

Krijimi apo evolucioni? apologetic

Të vërteta të fillme evangelistic

Ungjilli sipas Gjonit evangelistic (Gospel of John)

Vdekja e Krishtit evangelistic (especially for Moslems)

Krishti dhe Shqiptarët Albanians’ testimonies

Pararoja e Zotit biographical (about Hudson Taylor)

*extracts, included in Në Frymë dhe në të Vërtetën

G = Simplified literature from Grace Publications Trust or Grace Baptist Mission