The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America


'Oh, my Kosovo'

Lutherans assist refugees who hunger for home

Every morning Arta Kelmendi, 15, wakes to a nightmare, and something inside her says, "Draw it. Show the world what you see." And she does.

The nightmare began when Serb forces in Kosovo cleared Kelmendi's hometown, Pristina, of ethnic Albanians. Her home for now is the Radusa refugee camp of 1,500, which sits on the lower slope of a northern Macedonia mountain. The camp is about a mile south of the Kosovo border, which is marked only by mines and occasional Serbian patrols.

Today rain has transformed Radusa into a sea of slippery, red mud. A raw wind whips down from the snowcapped peaks of Kosovo, and Kelmendi shivers. It's impossible to know if her shivers are caused by the chill or the scenes on her pad.

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February issue


Embracing diversity