Elder Giles

Elder Giles
Mission Photos

Sunday, August 9, 2015

2 Timothy 4:7

Friends and Family,

This is it. The final email. I can`t believe this day is actually
here. This week, I will meet half of my family, and the following
week, I will be back home. It feels so surreal. We received transfer
emails today. My heart dropped a little bit when I saw, "Giles.... New
Area: Home.... New Companion: TBA.... New Position: YSA....". I`ve
watched a lot of missionaries return home over the last two years. I
always looked at those missionaries thinking, "holy cow, I`m glad
thats never going to be me." Well I guess reality had to come into
play a little bit because it`s here. I gave my last talk in Sacrament
meeting in Matsue yesterday and as I stood at the stand, the feeling
started to get real. It hit me right there. The end is here. What I`m
grateful for is there actually isn`t an end. All I`ll do is take off
the badge. I`ll be a missionary forever.
 I don`t even know what to put in this email. I feel like I`m still
in a little bit of shock. I don`t know if I`m ready to go through the
emotions that I know I`m going to be going through in the next few
days. I`ve come to realize that I hate goodbyes. I think it`s because
I know it`s never really "goodbye". We`ll all meet again eventually. I
just acted like it was a normal Sunday when we went to leave the
church yesterday. I`m terrible at saying goodbyes.
 Yesterday was a special Sunday for sure. We had an investigator get
confirmed in Sacrament Meeting and the blessing offered to her from
Brother N was one of the most amazing blessings I`ve ever heard. I
think it was more like a Patriarchal Blessing than a "here`s the gift
of the Holy Ghost" blessing. Awesome. I love this church. I love when
the Spirit comes into play and changes the hearts of all that are
present. Lots of members had tears in their eyes as we finished the
confirmation. It was an honor to be a part of, for sure.
 I leave you with a testimony gained over a very difficult, excited,
amazing, exhausting, faith building, character molding two years. I
know with the absolute surety of my heart that God is our father in
Heaven and that Jesus is the Christ. I know with all of my heart that
Joseph saw what he said he saw in the grove. I know the Book of Mormon
is the truest book on Earth and I know it`s the keystone of Christ`s
church on the Earth today. Take away the Book of Mormon and we have
nothing, we have the Book of Mormon, therefore we have everything. I
know God is pleased with my efforts here. I have done what I could to
serve the Master for the last twenty four months. "I have fought a
good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith." And
now, I`m coming home. This is it. Thank you all so much. Know that I
love you. I thank each of you for your examples to me. I couldn`t ever
do this alone. I love you! In the sacred name of our Lord and Savior
Jesus Christ, Amen.

Elder Jeffrey Maxwell Giles

My final Zone Training Meeting. Returning Missionaries are seated.

The Japan Sea. Here`s to an amazing two years!

Sign of the times...

Sunday, August 2, 2015


Friends and Family!

 Holy cow. Two more weeks left. I can`t believe the end is almost
here. I`m so excited to see you all again! It`s a little bitter sweet
because I don`t feel like I`m ready to leave this great place and the
work that I`m doing. I`m looking forward to the last full week of my
mission for sure! Here goes nothing!

We were asked by President W during the recent Zone Conference
that we had to rededicate both our area and ourselves to missionary
work. We climbed up a mountain close to our apartment and it had to
have been one of the best experiences of my mission so far. The
rededication was amazing. We took time beforehand to write out the
prayers we were going to offer in advance. It brought tears to my eyes
it was so powerful. Rededicating the area was so special. I took the
prayer that I wrote out and put it up in our apartment so all the
missionaries can see it in the future. It didn`t even feel like
anything I had prepared. It felt simply like the Lord was speaking
through me. The personal rededication was so sacred. It was amazing. I
truly feel like I`m ready to return home now. I felt the pleasing
assurance from my Heavenly Father that my work is accepted by him. I
committed to him in that prayer that I would be forever faithful to
the gospel and the testimony that I have. I love this church and I
love being rededicated. It was something that I`ll never forget, for

 I went on a companion exchange with Elder B (brazilian) in my
District this week and it was amazing! My exchange with Elder B
had to have been one of the best ones I`ve ever been on. It seems like
every time I`m in Izumo miracles are seen and we just find and teach
like crazy! I love that place. It`s so special. I think we ended up
finding like four new investigators or something like that. It was all
Elder B though. My Portuguese isn`t exactly the greatest thing
in the world. I was able to say a simple prayer in half Portuguese and
half English at the end of all the lessons we taught, so I guess I did
my part! As we were walking towards the church we passed an apartment
that I felt like we should try and house. We knocked on the doors and
ended up housing into a Brazilian family that just moved into the area
the previous day and were busy unpacking. They invited us in and we
talked for close to an hour or so and taught them a lesson. They ended
up going to church in Izumo yesterday and committing to go next week
as well, so that was a big miracle, for sure! The coolest thing was
that Elder B said when I told him we should house that building,
he was thinking that it was going to be a waste of time because he`d
already been there and there was no one there. It was the Spirit
guiding us for sure!

Well here goes another week. I`m working hard and still trying to get
as much out of my mission as I can. I love you all. I`ll see you soon,
but I leave you with my testimony of this work. I love being a
missionary. I know God is at the head of this church. I know we are
guided every moment of our lives by the Spirit, whether we know it or
not. I know Jesus Christ performed the Atonement for us. I know that
through the Atonement we can receive forgiveness of sin and power to
do the impossible. I love you all and I`ll see you soon!


Elder Jeffrey M. Giles