On 29 October 2007, at the “International Hotel” in Tirana, there was the presentation of the New Testament translated into modern Albanian with the title “SeBashku” (Together) published by the Interconfessional Bible Society of Albania.
About 250 people were present including some representatives of International Bible Societies, the Orthodox and Catholic Churches and various Protestant pastors. Among those present were Archbishop Rrok Kola Mirdita of Tirana, Archbishop Zef Gashi SDB of Bar in Montenegro, Bishop Lucjan Avgustini, of Sapë, and Mr. Rrok Logu, Ambassador of Albania to the Holy See. Among the speakers were some teachers from the Language Institute of the Albanian Academy of Sciences and journalists including Enkel Demi, a well-know television political commentator and a Catholic convert.
The work of translation that has taken almost seven years, was coordinated by Prof. Fr Carlo Buzzetti, from the Salesian Pontifical University in Rome, helped by a group of young collaborators. Starting from the interconfessional critical edition in Greek, the team translated the New Testament into modern Albanian based on the model of the Italian edition “Parola del Signore”, published by Elledici-ABU.
“SeBashku” is the first project of its kind in the history of the Christian community in Albania. Fr Buzzetti, who ensured a high quality of translation in no way inferior to similar European and World publications, emphasised that this edition of the New Testament is “youthful” in two senses; it is aimed primarily at young Albanians and the translators are under 33-34 years of age.
Just over a year ago a foretaste of 500 copies of the Gospel according to John, in a parallel Albanian and Italian edition, were distributed to young people at the Salesian oratory and the school of the Daughters of Mary Help of Christians in Tirana.