Latter-day Saints in Central America #LightTheWorld through service, recognition

Efforts include service projects in Nicaragua, a dinner program in El Salvador and awards ceremonies in Honduras

Members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in the Central America Area have been participating in various ways in the Light the World initiative this month.

The campaign began Dec. 1 and invites everyone to perform acts of kindness every day in December, leading up to Christmas Day. This year’s theme is “The world needs your light.” Ideas of what to do can be found at

Below are examples of sharing light in Nicaragua, El Salvador and Honduras.

Nicaragua Saints perform service to light the world

Members of five stakes in Managua organized efforts to collect food and personal hygiene items to share with two community centers for the elderly and for children and youth; and a children’s hospital in early December.

In addition to delivering the items, they also stayed and spent time with the elderly, children and youth, eating lunch together, singing Christmas songs and participating in games and dances, said the Church’s Nicaragua Newsroom.

President Daniel Orozco, president of the Managua Nicaragua Las Americas Stake, said he was grateful for all the members and their friends who helped, and for the work of the other stake presidents and Relief Society presidents who collected supplies and delivered them.

“We are grateful for sharing the love of the Savior,” he said. “The important thing was to show love to those who need it, and for that I am very grateful to all who participated in this activity.”

Youth prepare lunches for residents at Pajarito Azul, as part of a Light the World service project. Members from five stakes worked on several service projects for the Light the World initiative in Managua, Nicaragua, in December 2022. | The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Saraih Grijalva, president of the Relief Society of the Las Américas Stake, said the Light the World activity was organized together with stake leadership, the Relief Society and youth. 

“The purpose was to share the blessings that the Lord gave us,” she said. “This activity united us as a stake and it was even more wonderful when we received the support of the other stakes in Managua. I feel that this has united us more as members, as a country, and I feel very happy since in our hearts we were able to render service.”

Light the World program in El Salvador

In San Salvador on Dec. 8, members of the Church held a dinner and program for government officials, diplomatic corps and representatives of El Salvador’s main radio and television media to promote the Light the World initiative.  

The guests listened to Christmas carols and music of the season performed by the San Salvador Regional Choir and Orchestra, reported the Church’s El Salvador Newsroom.

Daniela Lemus, who helps with communications for the Church in the country, presented the list of 50 ideas to share light this Christmas and invited everyone to take part in the Light the World campaign.

“Christ told us that we must be a light to the world and every day we have or must look for opportunities where, even through small acts, we show that light of love and service to other people. Christ gave us that example of being a light by loving and serving others, and the world needs our light,” she said.

Government officials, ambassadors and other guests participate in a dinner and program to promote the Light the World initiative in San Salvador, El Salvador, on Dec. 8, 2022. | The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Ambassadors from other countries spoke about how officials can work together to share that light for other people and to serve others.

Isabel Cuellar, a representative from Zacamil National Hospital, referred to the Church as a strategic ally, not only because of the multiple donations received in terms of equipment and supplies, but also in terms of human support and service. 

“The members of this Church are one of the largest collaborators in blood donation campaigns, and wherever you go you reflect that human quality in volunteer activities and service to others,” Cuellar said.

Honduras Light the World awards

Church leaders in several areas of Honduras recognized community organizations with Light the World awards in December.

On Dec. 7, the award was given to Nuestros Pequeños Hermanos Foundation, as a thank you for the efforts and love given to the Honduran population, reported the Church’s Honduras Newsroom.

The president of the Tegucigalpa Honduras Toncontín Stake, President José L. Cárcamo Valle, presented the award, saying, “We give recognition to the Nuestros Pequeños Hermanos Foundation, for being an example of service, charity and providing hope to others in times of adversity as taught by our Lord Jesus Christ.”

Stephen O’Mahony, national director of Nuestros Pequeños Hermanos Foundation, receives a Light the World award from President José L. Cárcamo Valle, president of the Tegucigalpa Honduras Toncontín Stake, in Tegucigalpa, Honduras, Dec. 7, 2022. | The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

The foundation’s director said it was an honor to be recognized and thanked the Church for its help through the years.

In La Ceiba on Dec. 8, a Light the World award was given to Cesar Javier Quant, who has supported causes such as the fight against cancer. 

And in San Pedro Sula recognition was given to María Iris Rios, director of the organization Amor y Vida, which helps children and youth. 

Ríos expressed her gratitude for the award and said, “I really think I have a lot of work to one day feel really comfortable with this award and feel like I deserve it and feel like I’m really lighting up the world.”

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