Welches in Peru

Welches in Peru
Our family (November 2018)

Thursday, 27 July 2017

Diospi Suyana Buys the Crest of a Hill in Casabamba (our 5th FM Site)

 16 May 2017

Here following is a post by Klaus John with English editorial changes by me for clarity;

After two months of preparations… since 10 March in fact, Diospi Suyana has been searching for a suitable hill in the Province of Chincheros for our FM tower.  Several locations looked good at the outset, but had to be discarded for one reason or another (per my previous blog posts).

Yesterday in the city of Andahuaylas the president of the village community of Casabamba and Dr John finally signed the contract of sale.  Initially the signing was planned for last Saturday, but one document was realised to be missing (not uncommon).  A big thank you to Doris Manco who travelled twice into the region visiting several offices public authority thereby laying the groundwork for the purchase.

Diospi Suyana now owns five FM radio frequencies and five properties in Southern Perú. Two broadcast towers have been erected so far.  Work should begin soon in Casabamba and Puerto Maldonado. It was a long and arduous journey, but the result will let us forget the strains and stress we endured.

For every location we apply the following seven-point to-do list:
  1. Buy a radio frequency
  2. Buy a property
  3. Lay the foundations
  4. Buy and have the tower constructed
  5. Connecting electricity lines to the site
  6. Install the FM antenna system, satellite dish and FM transmitter
  7. Register the property in the commercial registry
So for our five locations this means 5 × 7 work processes, of which we have so far completed 15 steps so far.

Group photo: (from left to right) Notary Fabio Hernández, the president of Casabamba Sr. Raul Diaz, Treasurer Sr. Vicente Caderes and Dr. John taken load Saturday at the Notary Office
Doris Manco is quietly smiling, quite a feat considering how much frustration she has been through in the past few hours. On the right building engineer Udo Klemenz.

The hill's location is ideal (centre peak of 3,527m ASL) is relatively close to the electricity lines (from where I took this photo).
Here is the link to a Diospi Suyana post of this visit by Klaus (in English);



Wednesday, 26 July 2017

Re: Dr Ted Boyce and Stephen Trew’s PHCS visit from Sydney (day 2)

Dear All,

OOPS!  I goofed with yesterday's Feedburner email which you would have received with the subject "Audio test".  It included the post I meant for you to receive which was "Dr Ted Boyce and Stephen Trew’s PHCS visit from Sydney (day 2)".

The misfired Feedburner email happened whilst I was trying to fix the faulty MP3 link to the Diospi Suyana radio interview with Dr Ted Boyce and Stephen Trew.  If anyone clicked on this you would have found it did not play 😒.  I found this was a limitation due to Google Drive.

I have subsequently fixed this on our blog site (now using SoundCloud).  So if you want to hear any of the interview (there is English and Spanish both), then you can click on the link in the now updated / fixed blog post here:


Sorry, and thank you for your understanding,


Tuesday, 25 July 2017

Dr Ted Boyce and Stephen Trew’s PHCS visit from Sydney (day 2)

17 April 2017

Dr Ted and Stephen conduct speaking engagements at Diospi Suyana throughout Monday 17 April, which were extremely well received including radio and TV interviews at the Diospi Suyana Media Centre (of course).  These men bring a solid Bible referenced message which encouraged and challenged all to base ourselves on the timeless Word of God.  Ted’s theme is equality, as we are all made in the image of God.

I was impressed by Ted’s readiness as he was asked to speak without notice in the Diospi Suyana chapel service at 8:30am.  He immediately agreed and provided scriptures to put up on the screen (as is normal practice here) when requested by the Diospi Suyana pastor.  I commended Ted afterwards to which he quoted 2 Timothy 4:2 “Preach the word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage—with great patience and careful instruction.”
Ted Boyce and Stephen Trew pictured with the Welch clan!
Their meetings include discourses to the Diospi Suyana Colegio principals and teachers and the offer to setup both a teacher and student exchange program with PHCS!  For many Peru teachers this would be the first time they were to leave the country. 

We were sad to see them off on the morning of Tuesday 18 April.  They had blessed us from the time they had arrived until they departed.  Now they had some 22 hours of flying ahead of them to return home (Cusco → Lima → Santiago → Sydney).  Amazingly they also had meetings on the day they arrived back in Sydney!

First up at the Diospi Suyana Centro de Medios, radio interviews for Ted and Stephen.
You can hear the broadcast recording (MP3) on file via this link:  Diospi Suyana radio interview with Dr Boyce and Mr Trew

Then some needed makeup ☺ applied by Doris Manco – first for Ted.
…then also for Stephen.
Followed by Diospi Suyana television interviews hosted by Jesús Hurtado.
Afterwards an Aussie portrait of Jake, Stephen, Ted and Chris taken in the TV studio.
 Dr Ted addresses the Colegio teachers about PHCS and Christian teaching in Australia.
We then grab a quick bite of chicken from an authentic Peruvian café in town – here is my soup (I did not eat this mouthful by the way! ☺).
That evening Dr Boyce and Stephen Trew held a seminar for missionaries and members of staff.  Here Dr Mark Gingerich translates into Spanish.
A brief meeting with Dr Ted Boyce and Dr Tina John (as Klaus was unfortunately away during this visit).
We said our family farewells with Ted and Stephen on the Wednesday morning. 
Here is the link to a Diospi Suyana post of this visit by Klaus (in English);



Friday, 21 July 2017

Our first Easter in Perú and the arrival of Dr Ted Boyce and Stephen Trew from PHCS in Sydney

16 April 2017

On the Easter weekend my son Isaac (13) and I drive to Cusco and on Sunday we pick up our first organised Australian visitors from the airport; Dr Edwin (Ted) Boyce and Stephen Trew from Pacific Hills Christian School (PHCS).  They are visiting for 2 days and for us, some welcome Australian fellowship from “back home”.

Ted is the PHCS principal, writer and world renowned speaker having now visited over 70 countries (and multiple times to Perú previously).  When we took Jake out of year 10 mid-2015 to come to Perú we met with Ted and he promised to visit us here – see our earlier post for more on this; http://welchesinperu.blogspot.pe/2016/02/confirmations-with-radio-and-school.html  Anyone who knows Ted, knows he is a man of his word – and here is living proof with his arrival!

Mr Trew is a Sydney lawyer originally from NZ, bible teacher and PHCS chairman of the board – he also speaks Spanish as he is the son of mission parents who worked in South America. 

While Isaac and I were doing the pickup in Cusco, Sandi and our other kids attend the Diospi Suyana Easter dawn service on top of the hill overlooking Curahuasi.  Here is the Diospi Suyana post of this occasion from Klaus with some additional Welch family centric photos taken by Sandi on the day;

Irish Romanticism - the morning fog lifts and the first rays of sunlight touch the earth.  A wooden cross stands next to a stone altar.  On a blanket a simple flower arrangement.  Between 50 and 60 members of staff have come together to celebrate Easter.  For most of them it is their first mountain-top service they have attended.

They come from various churches and denominations and hail from many countries.  At the crack of dawn they set out for this mountain top drawn by a communal hope: they believe that “The grave is empty” and call “He is risen indeed!”

Dr Ruben Ibarra’s sermon comes directly from the heart.  This message is the reason why the Paraguayan doctor works in an honorary capacity for Diospi Suyana.

A picnic in the green countryside.  Food has never tasted so good before.  Good conversations at an altitude of 3,000m.  Then we headed back into the valley: we have to work on Easter Monday.  In the hospital, in the school or in the media centre they will put into practice what they experienced today:  Christ is the Saviour of the World! (Pictures taken by Dr David Brady, Valentina Sawatzki, Christian van Rensen and Sandi Welch)

For most of them it is surely the first mountain-top service they have attended.
Dr Ruben Ibarra from Paraguay preached.
Eight musicians trumpeted the good news into the mountain world.
Sarah Glöckler and Elisabeth Franke rode to the service.
Sarah enjoyed putting her Sydney horse riding skills to practice.
Others rode their mountain bikes – here is Sam “grandstanding” at the top of Capitan Rumi.
Picnic after the service.
There is enough for everyone – including Sandi (pictured) and our 7 kids in attendance! ☺
Stacey, Georgia and Jessica enjoying their Easter treats on Capitan Rumi!
 Early morning Easter chocolates laid out by Sandi for all kids in the Welch house, Curahuasi style.
Here is the link to the original Diospi Suyana post (in English);



Thursday, 20 July 2017

Completion of our Broadcast Site Construction in Curahuasi

12 April 2017

The Curahuasi 30m free standing 4 sided tower facility civil works has been completed with 3.5m high wall, painting, electrical feed consisting 5 poles and cables, distribution board and light to the facility. 

We now await the programme microwave link equipment which is being held at our freight forwarder in Miami along with our 5 VSAT (2.4m) satellite terminals for the other more distant transmission sites.  It has been held up due to Perú customs requirements for Diospi Suyana to hold the satellite agreement and also legislative red tape surrounding Diospi Suyana media centre charity recognition by the Ministry of Economy and Finance of Perú.

The Diospi Suyana Curahuasi Radio and TV site now completed and awaiting the transmission equipment.
The Curahuasi transmission site power line installation including 5 poles down to the Diospi Suyana Colegio.


Monday, 17 July 2017

The Annual Diospi Suyana Staff Retreat in Curahuasi

07 to 09 April 2017

The annual Diospi Suyana missionaries and staff retreat is held at the hospital chapel.  The speakers this year are American’s Gary and Frances Green whose topic was on time how to find rest in our work even when busy.  It was a message in season for many at Diospi Suyana.

Gary was a vet before his career change into the ministry.  In 1991 after a year in language school in San José, Costa Rica, Gary and Frances with their 4 children moved to Venezuela where they lived for 9 years.  There they helped start congregations and two regional camps.  They now support missionaries in South America.

Here is what Klaus posted on the Diospi Suyana website just after the event;

Dr. Gary and Frances Green have left Curahuasi.  Diospi Suyana staff were thankful for their three-day seminar.  Yesterday the couple, who currently live in Louisiana gave us feedback.  What they told us amazed us no end: “We had several very long conversations with staff members.  Not one of them spoke negatively about other team members!”

I think back to a sports club in Wiesbaden, which I was a member of 35 years ago.  Several players worked very hard to destroy the reputations of other club members.  You come across the same in politics: who does not like to stab a knife into the back of a rival while at the same time look at him faithfully in the eye and assure him of the fact that everyone is only concerned for the party as a whole.

Slander and intrigue, false friends and backstabbers can be found in companies and clubs.  Wherever people live together these base motives can appear.

Gary and Frances assured my wife and me: “No one spoke negatively about other team members!” – It is almost like a little bit of heaven here on earth.  We have 260 members of staff and in any company or group of such a size it would be normal to come across the group dynamic processes that abound elsewhere.

This morning I read some of the words that Paul wrote to a group of Christians locked in a prison cell in Rome: “Then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and of one mind…Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit… Do everything without grumbling or arguing!“ (Philippians 2:2-3;14).  The Apostle Paul would have rejoiced if he were sitting with us at the table.  Being a Christian must be more than just talking the talk.  The acid test is our daily interaction with others.


Here is the link to the original Diospi Suyana post (in English);

We were also blessed by Armond Anderyassian-Aznavooke (OK, just call him Armond!) from the UK and who we knew from Arequipa ABC Español Language school - he tutored Sam’s guitar playing a lot whilst there.  What an amazing musician!  He also recorded some of his new tracks at Diospi Suyana Media Centre for our radio and TV broadcasts.

Armond performing accompanied by Diospi missionary John Lentik on the piano


Friday, 14 July 2017

Our Return (again) to Andahuylas and Chincheros (Day 3)

07 April 2017

We return to our last alternative FM site in Casabamba in the early hours of the morning to GPS mark out the plot and get the purchase process underway by visiting the council surveyor and obtaining the needed “Memoria Discriptiva” document with which all the Notaria legalities must reference.
I make a GPS reference of our new (final) Casabamba FM site.
Here are our GPS readout confirming the knoll’s elevation of 3,527 m above sea level.
The council surveyor takes my GPS coordinates and generates a Memoria Discriptiva document. 
We then trek back the some 7 hours’ drive to Curahuasi to arrive in the middle of the night on Saturday – exhausted but satisfied that the best outcome possible having left no stone unturned with every possible alternative.



Wednesday, 12 July 2017

Our Return (again) to Andahuylas and Chincheros (Day 2)

06 April 2017

In the morning Klaus makes a presentation to an Uripa church pastor who was interested in Diospi Suyana.  This was followed by another alternative site visit (so we had a fall back option and we did not have to return as we had to do on this trip).  But we soon realised that site had a number of access and ownership issues and we would not pursue it.

Back on the road and we returned to Andahuylas to drop off our site construction manager Juan, and reinspect the tower progress.  I was amazed at the progress.  Klaus reports this visit on the Diospi Suyana website (with some minor edits for clarification by me);

The difficult journeys to Andahuaylas during which we tried extremely hard to get the approval from Poltocsa’s village council have almost been forgotten.  Since yesterday Diospi Suyana’s FM aerial tower stands proudly on the Lasimarca Mountain just outside the city of Andahuaylas.  The Australian Chris Welch (centre of the photo) was seriously impressed by how quickly it was erected.  Doris Manco, head of our media centre, could also hardly believe her eyes and Dr John could not stop taking photos!
 Juan Talaverano (on the right) and his team worked quickly and thoroughly so that the foundations were laid in no time. 
Within ten days he could start working on Diospi Suyana’s third aerial tower in the Province Chincheros.  The metal construction was made by the company ICESE in Lima.

A few minutes after the above photo had been taken a German, a Peruvian and an Australian gave thanks to God in their respective mother tongues. 
The 36 m high free standing ICESE tower standing proud above the almost completed 3 m high compound brick wall. 
Two ICESE company riggers at the top of the tower add the final touches.
Here is the link to the original Diospi Suyana post (in English);

But then when Klaus, Doris and I are back in the car we receive news that the Uripa community purchase has again stagnated due to political factions and the requirement for over 2,000 signatures (being 75% of the community governing this parcel of hilltop land).  This was the deal breaker.

So at this point we decide it is no longer a viable option and that we should return to Chincheros whilst we are relatively near, as it is only a 2 hour drive back from Andahuylas (and one 4,300 meter high mountain pass).  This is in order to finalise the purchase of our yesterday visited alternate Casabamba FM site.

After a phone call to get the blessing of our amazing wives back home to be away another one or two more days, we return to Chincheros yet again and arrive in evening to our re-welcoming favourite Uripa hotel.



Monday, 10 July 2017

Our Return (again) to Andahuylas and Chincheros (Day 1)

05 April 2017

The purpose of this trip is to firstly to inspect progress on Andahuylas tower construction and civil works.  Then onto Chincheros to finalise our purchase of a transmission site. 

Since our last visit things had stagnated with the purchase of our last preferred site from the Uripa community.  As good as that site was, it came with a high cost of a long power line run as our nearby site power pole with transformer was found to be privately owned by the adjacent tower operator and they would not share it with us.  So this trip was to make or break that deal with the Uripa community and investigate the site alternatives that I had by that time identified on my computer.

Following is a running chronology of the events in the day.

Firstly in Andahuylas we arrive to witness the commencement of the 36 m tower erection by the supplier ICESE.  Here below are some photos of the moment.
Here the first two tower legs are erected in place from their foundations to an awaiting Andahuylas city in the background.
Me onsite overseeing the commencement of tower construction.
Members laid out in readiness for our 36 m tower erection.
The ICESE 36 m tower plans printed in ready reference for the riggers.

Klaus and I, alongside the Casabamba community president and civil contractor Juan, approach our latest alternate site option – the grassy knoll in the top centre of the photo.
From our computer FM coverage modelling it services both Chincheros and Uripa townships surprisingly well (practically equal with our previously preferred site) including quite a few of the surrounding communities.  Also suitable power line is just 230 m away.  Casabamba is a small united and predominantly Christian community who want Diospi Suyana radio in their province.  Our site being located in their community also comes with the intrinsic advantage of site security.  This is our best option were our preferred Uripa community purchase to fall through.
At the summit of our named “Sitio 1b” in Casabamba community with Klaus is on the left, the Casabamba president centre and our civil contractor Juan on the right.
Then an unexpected delay with a flat tyre proving unusually difficult to replace.
When trying to replace the flat tyre our alloy wheel just did not budge after the nuts were removed as the alloy had corroded itself onto the hub.  This cost us valuable time making us late for our next community meeting.  Eventually with the aid of some farmer’s tools we were back on the road again.

Another evening Diospi Suyana presentation to a Quechua community leaders in Uripa who were all very supportive of our radio proposal.
We now wait to see what tomorrow brings…



Wednesday, 5 July 2017

Our Site Selection Trip to Puerto Maldonado (Day 2)

31 March 2017

A most successful outcome was realised with the straight forward purchase of a good transmission site for our FM transmission to cover this fast growing city now approaching 200,000 people.

Here are comments from a Diospi Suyana post by Klaus (includes some edits by me as thought necessary);

It is like Piccadilly Circus.  After several days of preparations via email and telephone, countless measurements on a computer and strategic considerations, the big moment has now finally come: Sra. Margarita Malaga Pacaya and Dr Klaus John sign the sales contract.

Udo, Doris and Klaus approach Garcia Medina Notaria (centre building) in downtown Puerto Maldonado.
Our signed legal instrument in the Notary assigning our new transmission site to Diospi Suyana.
During it all a TV on the wall is running at full volume.  If anyone needs a proof how urgently a Christian TV programme is needed, here you have it.  Left on the screen a new age magician / astrologer leads the spectators to be believe in the wonderful life of money, sex and power, which an attractive woman in a swimsuit on the right hand side of the screen underlines – all during children’s morning viewing hours!  There is no classification system in Perú.

In a couple of months, when the satellite connection is in place, Diospi Suyana will be able to reach hundreds of thousands with the best message around: God is real and he loves us.  Our life consists of more than money, sex and power.  We need to be at peace with God, have a fulfilled life and a perspective after death.

We then embark on our 11 hour return journey home to Curahuasi, arriving just before midnight.
We battle through the traffic of Puerto Maldonado heading out of town.
Again we are passing some beautiful “suva” countryside as we head home.
And the fresh fruit here available in roadside stalls is amazing and in plentiful supply (albeit unfortunately there was no time to stop on our trip home).
A not uncommon sight is laundry time and bath time all in one on the side of the Panamericana highway.