December 4, 2017

#IlluminaElMundo

Dear Friends and Family,

Thanks for your support! How has #LightTheWorld gone for you?? It's working miracles here in NoHo!

So the last section of Chapter 10 of Preach My Gospel has a list of converting experiences and I have always thought that it was the secret to success. You'd think I'd have studied it more closely by now. But just this week, I highlighted everything in the section that the investigator needs to do and the missionary needs to do, and (to my shock and surprise) the investigator needs to attend Church, Pray, and Read the scriptures (CPR) and thus gain a spiritual conviciton of the gospel. Nice one, Hermana Sleight.

Story time quick!

Mario the YSA who wants to be in the family ward asked us if 15 minutes a day is sufficient to read the Book of Mormon. He's so cool!!!

Mario Martinez's eyes lit up when I told him that in order to be baptized, he just needed to promise to always remember Him, keep His commandments, and represent Jesus Christ to the rest of the world. He started to say how he does that!

I love being a missionary! Martin is okay. 

Love,
Carmen

 Happy Hermanas! (Hma. Maw, current companion)
An opportunity to give service! 
Nana sent a gingerbread man kit which they made and hung on the fridge. When he fell down, Hma. Maw turned his smile upside down and left him on the floor. Carmen got a kick out of that. 

November 27, 2017

Gold Mines

Dear Friends and Family,

Thanks for your help and support! I need a lot of it!

Did you like #LightTheWorld??? It's back again! Just think of how great it's going to be to spread the light twice as far! Everyone who saw it last year is already on board, so share! Share! Share! We have to get the word out! You know me and math, You might think that twice the number of people will see it this year, but if we all share the video in every way possible, it'll be exponential!! (I can feel you all rolling your eyes). But seriously, this is such a door opener for the restored gospel. Besides that, it's a great opportunity to let your own life be lit up by the example of our Savior. Please, please! Light the world! In 25 ways, over 25 days.

Story time!

Yesterday, we were expecting Martin to come to church, but he didn't show. He had worked 30 hours over the last 2 days and he couldn't get up for church. We were also expecting Lexi and her siblings. No show. But count your many blessings! The Elders OYM'ed to someone that lives in our area, and he came to church for the second week in a row, even though we haven't been able to make contact with him! His name is Mario, but he's different from the Mario in the next story.

We had an appointment set with this Gold Mine and a church tour for right after. Hermana Penalosa was going to pick us up from Mario's house to a church tour with Martin. Well, when we got to the house, Mario wasn't there, but his member wife was. We started sharing a message with her and then he came! And listened! And we invited him to the church tour, and he came! Martin didn't, but Mario did! He told us about how he had had a bad experience once upon a time when a member told him he couldn't go to gospel doctrine because he wasn't baptized. He hasn't been back to the church in years. He wouldn't commit to come on Sunday. Then when we took him home, he said, "Maybe I'll come on Sunday." Then he came! His heart had been softened by the Spirit. 

On Saturday we tried to get into a goldmine's complex, but couldn't. We even tried carding the door, but there was a witness in his driveway across the street and we didn't want to look suspicious. So we talked to him! That's how we met Edwin. He's super awesome. That's all I want to say about him.

We played this fun game all week where you make a turkey with your hands(one hand is the feathers, one is the body) and you could 5 things you're thankful for and then the turkey gobbles. You say "Gobble! Gobble! Gobble!" and wiggle your fingers. It's only fun in larger groups because everyone gobbles differently and we all just laugh. 

Love you all so much! Have a great week! #LIGHTTHE WORLD!!!



November 20, 2017

Otra familia!

Dear Friends and Family,

Happy Thanksgiving!

Thanks for everything!

Guess what's just around the corner! The Christmas initiative!! Yay!! Remember how great last year's Christmas initiative was?  I encourage you to reflect a bit in the coming days on how #LightTheWorld was a blessing in your life and the lives of those around you. Then, on the 24th, check out mormon.org to spread the Christmas message for 2017! I know that the Holidays are a busy time and a time for giving a lot of everything to others. I hope that each of you is able to take a few moments and be still each day. Give a few minutes to God by reading and praying. 

What's new!

We decided to knock a few more doors after KO because we had gotten a late start and everything had fallen through. They let us in!! (that was a trainwreck because a member was around the corner to drop off dinner). We got an appointment for the next day with a member present and they asked lots of questions as we shared about the Book of Mormon. We're having another lesson with them tomorrow! Their names are Lucia and Santos.

Also we've been trying to contact gold mines, and even though we don't have any investigators, the members came to the activity (that's one family) and church (that's another), so I see investigators right around the corner! 

Love you! Thanks for all that you do! Enjoy your holiday!

All the hermanas were allowed to attend a baptism in Valencia and sing as a "girl band" (as much as can be for church). It was a fun time together. Pretty sure Carmen's comp, Hermana Maw is in the middle next to her. 

November 13, 2017

Sin mapa

Dear friends and family,

Thanks for the love and support! I'm thankful that you remember me:) 

I was pondering this morning losing ourselves in the work (back story: We got to the brand new area on Tuesday. They pulled a phone out of storage. No contacts, nothing. We put everything we needed on it. I lost it yesterday. :/ Record fast time for losing my phone. 5 days. Nice one, Hermana Sleight.) I was walking along with 3 other sisters, thinking about how between the 4 of us, we have one phone, and how my phone number has changed 6 times on the mission and my family hasn't had any of them. I really am not myself here. In a perfect world, I would be 100% a representative of Jesus Christ, and Carmen would just disappear for 18 months. Thanks for not forgetting me.

Stories! 

Hermana Maw is from Rexburg and I like her a lot. We opened this new area, but it has a lot of investigators already in it, which is awesome. We started with no map, no phone charger, no binder to put our new area book in, no proselyting materials, etc. Plus, you know me, I had lost my planner at transfer meeting. But we drew our own map! Our leaders helped us get by on materials, including a new planner for me, we got the phone number for the bishop, and boom! We're working. We love it here!

I finally got started on that goal I mentioned 2 general conferences ago, memorizing the Living Christ in Spanish. I am fascinated by it! His name is so much more frequently on my mind and lips. I encourage you all to do the same in the language of your choice.

God has not yet taken away the great sense of direction He has blessed me with, even though he has taken away my ability to remember names and faces. With a hand drawn map, I've figured out the area pretty quick. Twice now, we have gotten onto our bikes, and I have told Hna Maw where the name of the next person we were going to visit, and then refused to tell her anything else. She gets kind of frustrated, but she kind of likes the challenge I think:) Both times we had to backtrack a bit, but we got there just fine. Last night on the same bike ride where I lost the phone, she got to the edge of our area, looked up at the sign, and said, "Wait, this is OXNARD??" She looked at me all mad. "You let me ride across our area?" I couldn't keep it together. It was so funny! Maybe I'm mean. We worked it out.

Love you! Have a great week!
Love,
Hermana Sleight

PS Sorry no pictures I was counting on a nicer computer with an SD card reader.

November 6, 2017

Una familia!

Dear Friends and Family,

Thanks for the love and support! Your prayers on our behalf are always answered.

As I was reading 1 Nephi 3-4 this week, I asked myself why the Lord let Nephi and his brothers try and fail twice before they were able to get the plates. One reason might have been that they hadn't yet asked for help. Another might be that they needed to learn to bounce back from hard times. Sometimes, the Lord lets us all try and fail a few times, but He still expects us to try again. This is especially true for our family and friends accepting the gospel. It's not very often that people are interested the first time we bring it up. Sometimes they chase us out with 50 men. But if we follow the Spirit and go back, eventually, God will help everything fall into its perfect place.

Stories!

Yesterday at KO, we found a family!! It's a missionary's goal to find and teach families. They are going through a hard time because their son was just in a car accident, and they need a lot of help and comfort. Car accidents are stressful... We were right in their path, and they specifically chose a return appointment time when they'd all be around. I love it!!

This wonderful little woman named Leonor ordered a Book of Mormon by calling the number on the back of the card we left on her door! Missionary friends: leave cards on every door you knock. You never know!! She was so happy to get a Book of Mormon and asked for a Bible too. She is amazing! She has raised her 7 kids and 9 grandkids! She loves it. She understands the messages we've shared, and she wants to know if she should be baptized! The actually understands prayer. We didn't even have to tell her about it. I love it!

Yesterday we surprised Luis's family by stopping by and both of his parents listened while we helped Luis share what he had learned about the iron rod being the word of God with them. It was awesome! I love Luis. He always tells us about how he knows that God is a Mormon.

Thanks for all of your love and support! You're awesome! 

Love,
Hermana Sleight
Crystal got baptized! 
Hermanas left to right Penaranda, Rogers, Arenas, Pfeil, Lizama, McGlinchy, Juarez, Johnson, Figueroa, Sleight, Talbert, Johnson, Henrie​

P.S. from Mom, Carmen will be transferred to North Hollywood this week. She will be only one area short of covering the whole mission at that point! 

October 30, 2017

La Sala Familar

Dear friends and family,

Thanks so much for your love and support! You're awesome, en serio! (Hna M always uses that phrase. It's rubbing off.)

As for insights this week, I've been thinking about some Christlike attributes, including meekness, "enduring injury with patience and without resentment". This morning as I was studying meekness, I was reminded that Christ himself in both the New Testament and the Book of Mormon promised the meek that they would inherit the Earth. Whew, it's something I'm going to focus on. I realized that meekness is humility in times of trial. Trials are blessings. They're a rare opportunity to demonstrate true meekness, to "turn the other cheek" or "give him thy cloak also".

Stories!

When Hojana introduced herself, I immediately said, "Ohana means family.", and she said, "family means nobody gets left behind or forgotten." She has almost no experience with church, and she cancelled our return appointment for the next day, but she walked several blocks to come to stake conference with us yesterday! She asked for us to send the YSA missionaries, and that sounds great to me:) It blew me away when after a conversation about not believing in God, she said she'd give it a try. It just goes to show, there's no harm in an invitation, even if you don't believe they'll accept.

Luis wore his shirt and tie to stake conference yesterday. Additionally, his dad said something along the lines of "Who knows? Maybe the parents will follow the children!" #goldmine I love being a missionary!

Maybe mom will throw in some pictures from the halloween party:) Wonderwoman is Luisa who got baptized 8 ish weeks ago. 

Love you all! Have a great week!
Love,
Hermana Sleight

A Halloween party at Jessica's house
Luisa (Wonder Woman) got baptized! 
This little monster is too cute! 


 Hermanas Figueroa, Sleight and McDonald having a serious moment.
 It's a beautiful day in their neighborhood!
 Is the bottom photo smoke from the fires? She didn't elaborate. 



October 23, 2017

El Espiritu Cambia los Corazones

Dear friends and family,

I sure appreciate your love and support! Thanks for even reading this email!

I found this beautiful verse in my studies this week. D&C 12:8. I didn't memorize it or anything, but from it, we learn the importance of charity. I am re-learning a long-taught lesson. The best type of missionary work is Christlike living. A missionary without faith, hope, charity, love, or virtue isn't really a missionary, name tag or otherwise. Likewise, a person with faith, hope, charity, love and virtue is a true disciple of Christ, and every person they associate with learns a bit about the Savior. I would like to be more like that.

I'm going to try to elaborate a bit more than I have been. Storytime!

So about 6 weeks ago, maybe more, maybe less, I sent home this picture of the Orellana family. I love them! It's from our first visit with them. We don't visit very often, but they have been taking our invitation to have FHE and family scripture study. Slowly but surely, the Spirit has been changing Javier's heart. He is their non member dad, and when we visited yesterday, he told us that he wants to come to church. We watched this great video, "Patterns of Light" by David A Bednar. I really love those videos. He told us with a smile on his face that for him it's been like the rising sun, but it's finally coming from his own heart. :') I believe that he'll be baptized soon.

Last Saturday, a member invited us to have dinner at her daughter's birthday party. Usually that's not really the goal of a dinner at a membe
r's home, but we went, and we talked to her sisters-in-law. They're not members. They don't live in the mission. We chatted a bit, we shared a bit about the Book of Mormon. We offered them a copy, and one accepted. We offered to send the missionaries to her home. She accepted and gave us her info. The lesson I've learned is that it doesn't take much time to share the gospel. It can be done at a party. Sure, my setting apart gives me courage, but any of you could do the same and get the same result:) I have confidence in your ability to do this work!

I love you so much! Have a great week!
Love,
Hermana Sleight
 Desk cleaning day! Hermana M said, "I found it in my desk!"
Hermana M getting Elote (grilled Mexican corn)

Proof that the car wash was closed so they didn't get in trouble with the mission office!