As this beautifully illustrated story opens, we meet Drita, a young Albanian girl whose family has lived for years under repressive communist rule. After decades of religious oppression, Drita is finally able to discover the faith of her ancestors. As she experiences God’s love for her through the example of her grandparents and the teachings of missionaries, she turns her heart toward Christ. At the story’s joyful conclusion, Drita is baptized and lives in an Albania where all are now free to openly worship, praise, and glorify God in His Church. Illustrated by Cameron Thorp.
About the Author
Fr. Martin and Presbytera Ritsi and their children, Stephanos and Nicole, were sent as long term missionaries to Nairobi, Kenya in 1987 to serve the Eastern Orthodox Church. Presbytera (the Greek word for ‘priest’s wife’) taught English as a second language and public speaking at the Makarios III Orthodox Seminary in Nairobi; assisted with the archdiocesan finances; and offered women’s retreats in the archdiocese. The Ritsi family then served as OCMC missionaries in Albania. They helped to reopen the Orthodox Church there, which had been persecuted and closed for decades. Renee wrote a column for the archdiocese newspaper and children’s magazine and traveled to remote mountain regions to supervise the creation of a rural women’s health and development program.
About the Artist
Cameron Thorp is an award-winning artist who works as a freelance illustrator and designer. Cameron grew up in New Zealand and has spent his time in Haiti, the Dominican Republic and Mexico as a missionary. He now lives in Asheville, NC with his wife and five children.