July 31, 2017

No carta nueva

This is Robbie. Carmen didn't get a group email off in time. Sometimes she gets distracted with personal emails and I'm sure with her birthday last week, she probably had a few.
Last week was rough. They have a lot of investigators right now. Sometimes they would get to appointments and be stood up. Sometimes they forgot appointments. So if you could send a prayer their way, I'm sure she'd appreciate it.

Here's what she had to say about her birthday:
It was awesome! I woke up and we exercised and planned, then Hna P made the rest of the chunky monkey pancake mix, then she took pictures while I opened my presents. I love my new watch and all the clothes! It's perfect! I also think Hna W might have had this same skirt. Then we had studies and birthday cake lunch, then we went to district meeting where I got lots more presents and cards and President and Sister Henrie were there! The work wasn't all that special, but I got to eat at In-and-Out for dinner, and we picked up a homeless investigator that was eating what people would buy him. We'll see if he keeps his return appointment. 

Here are a few pics she sent me:
Happy birthday shirt and chunky monkey pancakes! 

Dirt cake made by Herman Pfeil, we love this girl! 
Which girl? We love them both, thanks Hna Pfeil for making her pancakes and dirt cake
and Happy birthday to my beautiful 20 year old on a mission!

Happy Hair day! 

July 24, 2017

Nuevos investigadores, pero no fechas

Dear Friends and Family,

Thanks so much for your support!

I had some eye-opening studies this week, and I think the part I want to share is the prespective of 3 Nephi as a lesson in parenting. God demonstrated by His actions that the Nephites behavior was wrong, AKA mass destruction. Then he gave them time to recover before he spoke to them, but when he did, he taught them the principle of repentance and forgiveness, and he allowed for silence. Then later, as a reward for their changed behavior (3N11:1), Jesus Christ himself came and ministered to them. Anyway, it's a cool parallel with mortal parenting, not that I have any experience.

We are great finders! My companion and I find new investigators like crazy! It's a lesson in balance, though, because we have only 2 people on date. Sometimes I wish I could be the finding missionary and someone else could do the teaching and baptizing. That's not how it works though. 

Gloria came to church! Hooray! She always surprises me at the last second. I still think she's going to be baptized. 

Elda's sister came to visit and they haven't seen each other for 6 months, but Elda still walked to church by herself! It was her first time! The amount of faith this woman has is incredible! 

Also, there's a homeless transgender woman who lives in my area. Yesterday she crossed the street to talk to us! That's like a 6 lane street!! What an adventure! Anyway, now Erica is our new friend!

Hermana Sleight

Charcoal facial day! 

Hermana Pfeil's family has a Sunday tradition of pancakes. Carmen loves stuff like that. 

July 17, 2017

Oh no! Me quita el tiempo

Dear Friends and family,

Sorry for the quick email. Thanks for all of your support!

Please ponder the power of the Book of Mormon and look up the video, "The Book of Mormon speaks for itself". I don't know if it's publicized, but it's really good.

So many miracles I don't know where to start. How about a devote catholic coming to church with her whole family? I love being a missionary! Watch out for Miriam, Jose, and Alondra Salinas. 

I love you all!!

From her Mom: She's so busy trying to do regular missionary work and be an STL that she only washed her laundry and it's sitting in her car,waiting to be hung dry. The photo is her zone. Her mission president is to the right of the photo, President Henrie. 

July 11, 2017

Como se dice whitewash?

Dear Friends and Family,

I sure appreciate all of the love and prayers! You're a great support to me!

What a crazy week! I love being a missionary! Hermana Pfeil and I are whitewashing Van Nuys 5to! There are luckily 4 companionships of missionaries in the ward and we're all plenty busy! We've been able to get important information from the other companionships.

Deep pondering on Christ being in the Father and the Father in Him: If my friends happened to come home from their missions this summer and find my little sister hanging with their little siblings, they might observe that she looks just like me, and that she acts just like me, and that she says the things that I used to say. If all this hypothetically happened, my friends might say "I can see Carmen in you." This doesn't mean that I am literally inside my sister nor that my sister and I are the same being. I simply means that if I were there, I would do the same thing she was doing. When I think about this in terms of Christ and Heavenly Father, I realize that Christ perfectly represented Heavenly Father. Everything he did and said was exactly what His Father would have done and said. His teachings are God's teachings. I may just be making up doctrine here, but this is the way I understand the scriptures right now, and I thought I'd share. Maybe it will help you understand it too.

Stories!! Let's see, we were on the way to knock out, but there was no way we could get to where we planned anytime soon, so we went to the next apartment complex and started pushing buttons hoping someone would let us in. The manager came and let us in, then told us he'd been praying for someone like us. That's how we met Josue. He's had a member present lesson and a church tour since then. BUT wait there's more! At that moment we asked for a referral, and he sent us down the gold hallway, where we met the referral and set up a return appointment plus 3 new investigators and a referral for the missionaries in the other valley!! That's the story of my first full day in Van Nuys. 

I've heard so much about Alondra from the hermanas that used to work in this area and she's a YSA investigator now that I'm not, but we're trying to teach her family. The best part of the lesson with her and her mom was when her Dad walked in to the house and while he was cleaning up so he could come join us, she looked us in the eye and told us "You're going to like him. He's a good Dad." with all sincerity. I love hearing that. I love that families are a part of God's wonderful plan. 

One time we were trying to find a family on the ward list that we hoped was part member, but then the address didn't exist, so we tried the complexes on either side both had the right apartment number. At the first one, we knocked and no one answered, but we knocked on both sides and found 1 potential and 1 new investigator! What a life! God always takes us to the elect. We just have to stick around long enough/get there soon enough to find them! Be brave, missionaries! Be brave, member missionaries! 

Okay, I love you so much, have a great week! 
Hermana Sleight
Hermana Pfeil blowing up balloons for Obispo's kids

Carmen and her new companion, Hermana Pfeil, whom Carmen says is a very happy person
and gives lots of pep talks! 

Obispo (Bishop) of Van Nuys ward

July 3, 2017

Cuan Rapido!

Dear Friends and Family,

Thanks for all of your love and support! Sorry I haven't left myself with sufficient time to write everything here. Hopefully you like all of the pictures.

As for studies this week, I found a verse in 3 Nephi 18 about Christ being the light and the example for us. There are a lot of parallels between light and examples. It's important to remember that many people have no idea how to be or do good until they've seen it done. Much like light shows us where to go, example shows what to do. Ye are the light of the world. Follow Christ's example, and be an example for others. Don't hide.

I'm being transferred out of YSA already!! I'm very sad about that. I love this little branch. It's been such a fun transfer of figuring myself out. 

On Tuesday, Luis (a recent convert) brought his cousin Roberto to FHE. Roberto responded well to learning about the Book of Mormon, and we've had several lessons with him since! He is awesome. When we told him we were being transferred but we'd be at his baptism, he said, "I think I will get baptized." What a champ!

And we found Geo! He gets it! It was the boldest I think I've ever been with a person. The Holy Ghost filled my mouth with words about Christ's mercy and justice and how we must live the Gospel, or we can't be saved. I love being a missionary!

Love you all! Have a great week!

Temple - E. Kerr, Rivera, H. Talbert, S. Parker, me - the quints!(we 5 were born in the same zone at the same time)

Whoa, super dark picture with Estuardo and tia.

Hermana Arenas and Carmie Shmarm
Hermana Monarrez and Carmie Shmarm