Three years ago, Joshua Stanton was walking around Peja, a Balkan city where the skyline is punctured with the dainty minarets of three historic mosques, when he decided to put on his yarmulke.
“I am Jewish,” he thought. “I want to put it on.”
Under the Ottoman Empire, which ruled Kosovo from the early 15th century until 1912, most Albanian Kosovars converted to Islam.
But today, Jakaj and others are on a mission that they say reflects a renaissance of Catholicism in the country. Muslim Kosovars are supporting the effort, too, even though most of Brod is now Muslim.
“This is our history of our nation,” said Ademi, whose forefathers were Catholic.
“These are our first steps toward reclaiming our cultural heritage.”