Monday, November 19, 2012

Happy Muslim New Year & Thanksgiving

After church with Edina there was a "Children Against Violence" rally. They gave us these cards.
We love Edina.  On our way to church!
Cao, Cao, Cao!

First of all, Happy Muslim New Year! Apparently the Islam calendar started over this week. There wasn't a big celebration or anything, but someone told us that was happening. haha

This week has been a week full of teaching! It's so bittersweet that Sestra Trumbo is leaving because we just started to get into our groove, but I know she will be such a light and a joy that is needed in Belgrade! We found 5 new investigators this week and have been lucky to be having success! 

Two of the people we are teaching are a married couple who are about 60 years old and both grew up in Sarajevo. They are so so darling! We tracted into them and they let us right in. Since they both grew up here, they are both Muslim. They are very interested in everything we have taught them so far, but mostly our idea of prayer. In Islam they recite prayers that are written in the Koran in Arabic. The wife was expressing how that is hard for her because she doesn't understand a dang thing they are saying! We told her that we use our own words and it is our way to talk to God and she was very, very interested in learning more about it. We told her that the best way that she could learn more is if she tried it herself, so she did! It was so cute because she didn't know what else to say in the middle of her prayer so her husband was helping her with some things and she told him to shut up in the middle of the prayer! haha. Sestra Trumbo and I almost lost it. haha. People here are just like I am: stubborn and independent. haha I think that is probably why we get along so well :)

Happy Birthday Elder Shillabeer!
This week we had a goodbye dinner for Elder Shillabeer, who goes back home to England tomorrow, and Sestra Trumbo at our Branch President's house. Sister Lamoreaux made us mexican food (which they don't have in Bosnia. CRAZY!) and we had apple crisp and chocolate chip cookies for dessert. I don't think I could have been more satisfied. haha The best part of the night was when all 5 of us missionaries taught Lesson 3: The Gospel of Jesus Christ. It worked perfectly because there are 5 principles in the lesson and 5 missionaries! We each took a different principle and taught for a few minutes. The spirit was so strong.  I feel so blessed to be surrounded by such good people, and to be able to testify of the truthfulness of this gospel alongside them. I really felt empowered by hearing all of their testimonies. It reminded me of how important it is for us to share our testimonies! We may never know the impact it can have on others.

Isaac, the branch President's son and our next broadway star:)
After our lesson we had a little impromptu talent show which was kicked off with (in true Giles' family style) a RAP by Sestra Trumbo and I. Needless to say, I think we caught everyone that was there off-guard! I'm not sure how many Sister missionaries in the world rap...hahaha We wrote the rap as a little goodbye-wish for Elder Shillabeer, so it was fun to especially see his reaction! haha After that we got to hear Elder Shillabeer on the piano, President Lamoreaux on the guitar, Eli (his 17-year-old son) did a puppet show for us and Isaac (his 11-year-old son) sang us some songs from "Into the Woods". It was a great goodbye for Sestra Trumbo and Elder Shillabeer. We are really going to miss them!

One thing that I read this week that really helped me was in Jacob 7:5. Sometimes it's really hard to have people tell you that "you're lost" and "God isn't our father. He is just our creator" and that "Jesus Christ isn't the Savior". Never have I met so much opposition in my whole life! But this week in my personal studies I was reading about Jacob having a very similar situation. A man named Sherem begins to preach against the things that Jacob has said about Christ and now Sherem wants to talk to Jacob personally.  Jacob knows what Sherem really wants and in verse 5 he simply says:

 And he had hope to shake me from the faith, notwithstanding the many revelations and the many things which I had seen concerning these things; for I truly had seen angels, and they had ministered unto me. And also, I had heard the voice of the Lord speaking unto me in very word, from time to time; wherefore, I could not be shaken.
It was a gentle reminder that I can stand strong in my work because I have felt things that these people don't understand right now. We each need to remember the sacred things that we have experienced in our lives and not let others ideas of what we are doing shake us from our firm foundations! I know that as we continue to be faithful and to do those things that we know bring us joy that we will have a more firm foundation, and who doesn't want that? :)

I love you all! Thanks for all your support. 
Sestra Giles


  1. I am really enjoying Sister Giles blog -- she is a great writer and I can tell she is a wonderful missionary! My daughter entered the MTC last week to serve in the same mission (Croatian speaking). Hopefully she will be able to serve with Sister Giles!

    1. Thanks Carol! McKenzie is loving the mission. She has learned so much and loves the people. I had heard that there was one sister in the MTC going to the mission:)That is so exciting!!! Where are you from? How did you find her blog? haha. If you ever want to talk give me a call:)

  2. Yes, Katie is a solo sister at the MTC with 7 elders also going to the same mission. We live near Sacramento. I found McKenzie's blog by googling "sestra adriatic mission blog"! And I'd love to ask you a few questions sometime if you'd like to email your phone number to me ( Thanks!