New House ChurchWorshiping with the new church on the front veranda of our house.

In November we changed houses from the south part of the city to the northern part for a couple of good reasons.  Sharon has had a really long commute to work each morning.  Also, there was no church in that part of town.  So, we chose a house with enough parking spaces for the SNACK trucks and would be conducive to church assemblies.

Our new house and SNACK OfficeThe SNACK trucks parked beside our new home preparing to go out to the countryside to bless the children.

The University Church of Christ which meets in the south and with whom we had served from the beginning strongly encouraged us in our mission to plant a new church in the north.  They sent us out with blessing and prayer December 7th.

Try preaching at UcoCAn older photo of Try preaching for all of us at the University church of Christ.

Right away, we began inviting the SNACK staff to invite their neighbors for lunch and worship.  We have normally had about 15-20 people, mostly Christians but a few others with faith who had not yet committed themselves to following Jesus only.  We were really encouraged that on the two occasions when we were out of town, the church met, ate together and worshiped just like any other Sunday.  Normally, we are the only foreigners/missionaries in attendance.

Worship at our new houseThe church gathered to worship inside our new house (without us there).

Sunday, 26 January we noted that there were some non-Christians who had not yet given themselves over to Christ so we helped a newer young Christian tell the gospel story.  Two of the young disciples decided to have Jesus clean them from their sins, receive His Holy Spirit and become a new creation in Christ.

Vutha baptized by BothVutha, 26 being baptized by Both

With a little encouragement and mentoring we asked one of the other young men (who had only ever witnessed baptism when he was baptized at one of the SNACK villages) to perform the baptisms.

Poun baptized by BothPhoun, 23 being baptized by Both

We welcomed Vutha and Phoun into the family of God as He added them to His church.  Please join our prayers that these two new babes in Christ will grow and flourish in the grace and peace of God, that they will tell many others what the Lord has done for them, and the others who are not yet Christians will decide to give their lives entirely to Christ Jesus, our Savior.  We praise God with you and with all the hosts of heaven that our new church is making new disciples and new Christians.

 After baptismsleft-to-right Dennis, Kolab, Phoun, Vutha, Noeurn, and Both

Encouragement to grow.Encouraging our new family to help one another grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord Jesus.

Posted in Cambodia, Christian Mission Cambodia, Christianity, church of Christ, Jesus, Khmer, ministry, Mission | 2 Comments


GRACE for Cambodia logo



a special note of thanks to all of you who are blessing these children…

Helping Kids

Greetings—grace and peace in the Lord!  As we close out another year in service to the Lord in Cambodia we thank God and thank you for what you have been doing in Cambodia.  The GRACE for Cambodia SNACK Program, originally started in 2005 by Bill McDonough of Partners in Progress as the Partners in Progress Nutritional Feeding Program continues to fulfill the mission of ministering to poor, malnourished children in rural Cambodian villages.

Children praying

During 2013 you served our Lord by:

  • Hiring a new full complement of Christian servants to serve and educate the children in health, hygiene, nutrition and Bible.  Most of these Cambodians servants have been trained at the Bible school and have evangelized in the SNACK villages.

all Christian SNACK staff

  • Hiring Piseth as an operations manager.  He formerly served on the Partners in Progress Ship of Life, but desired to live and serve the Lord from Phnom Penh to be with his wife and son.

2-Operations Manager-Piseth & Family

  • Replacing the tired, worn-out old trucks with newer, more dependable and more fuel-efficient models.  The trucks have all been repainted a special color for the children to know that you are bringing them blessings for their bodies and souls.


  • Reworking the truck routes to save fuel.  Also, the program parks one of the trucks in the countryside during the week to save even more fuel.

Fueling-up the SNACK trucks

  • Providing specialized training to the SNACK staff in health, hygiene, nutrition and evangelism.

SNACK staff receive special training

  • Sharing the Good News about Jesus more frequently, in different ways and at different times, including some staffers going out to the villages on their day off to teach and preach.


  • Doing good deeds of service from hearts of love to help the villagers with their rice harvest and with providing wound care when able.

Good Deeds-Rice Harvest7-Helping with Medical Needs

  • Training new volunteer helpers from among the SNACK children that reflect their growth in hearts to serve one another.

Training new volunteers

  • Providing nutritious SNACKS of bread, vitamin enriched peanut butter and specially fortified soy milk to over 2200 different children in 12 villages about 4 times per week at a cost of about 50 cents per serving, which is reported to be the least expensive of any program of this nature.  It works out to about $7.50 per month to improve the health and education of one malnourished child.  How many children could you help?

10-Healthy SNACKS for Nutrition

  • Improving the health of these precious young lives at the ages it matters most.  We continue to see the quality of health exceed that of neighboring villages that we would like to help also.

Improved health

  • Hosting, for the first time ever, Abilene Christian University interns, Mallory Wilkins and Shanleigh Clinton to serve Sharon and the children in the SNACK Program.

Shanleigh and Mallory Sharing SNACKS

  • Starting a new congregation from among the SNACK staff and some of their friends and neighbors in an area of Phnom Penh where no church existed.

11-New Church

This is what you have accomplished over the last year through your partnership with the GRACE for Cambodia SNACK Program.  We, all of the children, their families and our staff all thank you and thank our Lord Jesus for your ministry to Cambodia.  We are excited to see how you will bless these children even more in 2014.

Thank YOU for Helping many Children

Love and blessings,
Sharon and Dennis Welch
GRACE for Cambodia, SNACK Program

Learning to Wash HandsTHANK YOU!  THANK YOU!  THANK YOU!

Posted in Cambodia, Cambodian children, Cambodian kids, Christian Mission Cambodia, Christianity, church of Christ, Jesus, Khmer, ministry, Mission, poor Cambodia, poor countries, poor villages, preaching in countryside, teaching in countryside | 2 Comments

October 2013 Newsletter

October 2013 Newsletter

For the Glory of God

Letters of PaulWe dearly love Paul’s letters to the saints.  He commonly greets his beloved brethren with words like, “Grace and peace to you from God, the Father of the Lord Jesus Christ.”  To that we add, “May you fully know Jesus, filled with faith, joy, hope and love.”  God has blessed us all with everything we need for full, abundant life in Christ Jesus, as human beings and as new spiritual creations in the image of our Creator and Savior. Abundant Blessings Among those blessings are your love, prayers, encouragements, support and partnership in His Good News.  Thank you, Father!  Thank you, beloved family and friends!

God at WorkAfter the excitement of our late spring through summer travels for conferences and reporting, one could say that September and October 2013 were just…well, normal.  Can that really ever be said about life abroad in a third-world country?  Sharon’s SNACK Program interns had returned to the USA.  Dennis was leading the study of his third consecutive course without a break.  Students had come and gone at the Bible school.  The SNACK Program was ministering according to its mission.  It all seemed so…ordinary.

God Is At WorkThen we started jotting down the ways we saw God working among us.

What’s the news?

  • Ephesians and Colossians, letters that could easily have been written to the Cambodians
  • Harding University’s World-Wide Mission’s third annual visit to SNACK
  • Cambodia Bible Institute Graduation Ceremony and new students
  • PrayNew SNACK trucks and staff
  • Volunteers rewarded for their service
  • More visitors
  • Looming decisions

Teach & LearnFollowing-up courses on Acts of the Apostles and on Ezra, Nehemiah and Esther, Dennis spent three weeks sharing Paul’s letter to the Ephesians with just seven students at the Cambodia Bible Institute (CBI).  Why so few?  With the recent graduation of the oldest students and with a bunch of new students, CBI decided to start the new ones with an introductory course in another room while Dennis studied Ephesians with the balance of the students.  Written to Christians in an idol worshiping culture of Asia Minor, this letter has many helpful applications to the church in Cambodia, the first three chapters declaring the majestic glory of God’s eternal plan in Christ and His church, followed by three chapters of practical living instructions to Christ’s body, the church. Ephesians-Khmer Immediately following Ephesians Dennis led a study of Colossians and Philemon, other great letters for the Cambodian context.  Please pray for God’s Word to sink deep into the hearts of the Bible school students so that God may glorified by what comes back out from their hearts, lips and hands.

Harding group at Trach TorngPreparations were once again made for the Harding University’s World-Wide Mission’s third annual visit to join the SNACK Program.  This year 25 university students, their chaperones and Cambodian guide shared the gift of their time and love with over 450 children in the countryside.  We took the group to some of our more remote villages and were pleasantly surprised by the number of parents who were impacted by this great ministry.  All had a wonderful experience and the children were blessed with a lot of love and special attention. Harding Student Sharing SNACK The students and chaperones continue to be strongly impacted and speak of how they see God working within this program.  We are so grateful for these young men and women, for their time, effort and desire to serve in Cambodia.  We are grateful for your prayers.  Please keep praying for the SNACK Program to bear fruit for the Kingdom.

CBI Graduates & StaffWhat a delight it is to see new faces at CBI eager to learn God’s Word.  It is equally delightful, yet sad to see them go when they complete their studies with us and graduate from CBI.  We recently held a graduation ceremony and party for our four most senior students, Sreymom, Linna, Phally, and Kakada.  The best place to read about graduation, future plans of the grads, and about new CBI students SIBI Pin for Gradis the blog of Rich and Ronda Dolan, Please join our prayer for God to bless the work of CBI with much fruit and for the graduates to find productive ways to practically use the knowledge they have gleaned from His Holy Word.

We finally completed all the replacement SNACK truck purchases, had SNACK Program-New Look with Decals them repainted and have begun to have the new decals applied.  We also added a new teacher, Srey Khouch.  She has a sweet, gentle spirit and loves to teach the children.  We are delighted to add another young lady to our staff.  Please pray that our staff continues to grow in love and in their ability to share the Good News of Jesus with the villagers.

SreyKhouchIn all the SNACK villages there are older children who voluntarily assist our staff with teaching, washing cups and assisting with the children.  To reward them for their service to SNACK and the children Sharon and the staff presented them with a special, practical gift consisting of a Bible story book, soap, detergent, shampoo, toothbrush and paste.  They were thrilled to be blessed in this way.  Please say a prayer of thanksgiving for the servant hearts of these children. Volunteer Children

As always, we are delighted to receive visitors from the States.  Recently, Ashley Close, granddaughter of our Sunset Instructor, Doyle Gilliam was in Cambodia for a short-term work assignment so she looked us up and spent time in our home and with the church.  Sharon-Ashley-Theary-Sreykhouch @ Graduation Thanks Ashley for your sweet encouragements to us and to Theary.  Please say a prayer of thanksgiving for encouragers like Ashley and that God will pour-out even more blessings on her, His faithful servant.

For more than two and a half years Sharon has dealt with traffic jams and a long commute to the office for the SNACK Program. Moving Furniture Crop So, we have decided to move to that area in Phnom Penh and plant new churches in our home and in surrounding communities.  Dennis strongly desires to do more personal discipling and this move will give him plenty of opportunities to shepherd the SNACK staff toward greater love and good deeds.  We have already shifted the focus of our family home Bible studies toward these goals.  Please, please pray for the success of our house selection and that our new works will bear much fruit for the Master.

Dennis TeachingSo, what’s ahead?  Lord willing, Dennis will prepare to teach the Gospel of Mark at CBI in December; we will receive two guests from Oak Harbor, WA; we will move by the end of November; and, will start new small groups and a congregation in our new home.  The future is exciting and challenging.  We hope you will honor our prayer requests and join us in heart as we strive to glorify our Mighty Lord here in Cambodia.

Sweet GirlsSokchea & Virak & SNACK Kids Eternal love & blessings,
Dennis & Sharon
Phnom Penh, Cambodia
Theary & Ashley-Khmer Cooking Lessonsfor a downloadable .pdf version of this newsletter please click HERE
Posted in Bible School, Cambodia, Cambodian children, Cambodian kids, Christian Mission Cambodia, Christianity, church of Christ, Jesus, Khmer, Khmer Bible, Khmer translation, ministry, Mission, Newsletters, poor Cambodia, poor countries, poor houses, poor villages, preaching in countryside, teaching in countryside | 1 Comment

Another Video

On our “videos” page we posted a link to the video clip of our testimony at the Asian Mission Forum in Chiang Mai, Thailand, August 2013.  We were asked to tell our story and about our relationship as a couple in Christ.  We hope it encourages you.  You can find it HERE.

Telling our story at AMF 2013

Posted in Cambodia | Leave a comment

CBI Update August 2013

The following summary report has been edited and adapted from an update produced by Rich Dolan, Dean of the Cambodia Bible Institute, Phnom Penh.

Students and staff of the Cambodia Bible Institute, August 2013

Students and staff of the Cambodia Bible Institute, August 2013

CBI Update

August 16, 2013


  • Student Body – We had 11 students. Added 5 more this week and supposedly have 3-5 more coming soon. The new school year is always exciting.
  • Noeun Graduated in late June – he is the married man who studied for a year, then stopped to be with his family and came back 2 years later. He is currently working with the SNACK program (feeding and teaching poor kids in the villages) and has just planted a congregation in north Phnom Penh
  • Linna, Phally, Sreymom & Kakada graduate in mid-Sept


  • Apr. 18-May 17 Romans – Rich Dolan
  • Apr. 18-May 17 Wisdom Literature – Dale Lundy
  • May 20-31 Humanity of Jesus – Rich Dolan
  • May 20-31 O.T. History 2 (1st ½) – Veasna Tol (his 1st full class to teach)
  • June 3-14 Evangelism Class (2 weeks, all day) – Tim Brumfield
  • June 17-22 School Break – 1 week
  • June 24-July 5 O.T. History 2 (2nd ½) – Veasna Tol (1st full class to teach)
  • June 24-July 26 ACTS – Dennis Welch
  • July 8-July 26 Sermon Prep Class – Rich Dolan and Tol Veasna
  • July 29-Aug 2 Evangelism Week
  • *Had to take off July 29th. The 28th (Sunday) were the national elections and most people had to travel back to their hometown to vote.
New students who began studying at CBI in August 2013

New students who began studying at CBI in August 2013

New Students

Of the 5 new students we added between March and May, only Sothary is still in school. Two boys studied one week and didn’t come back. Leave stopped to study at the University. SreyPov dropped out. As the new term starts, we added 5 more students, with 3-5 more to come.

(Ronda Dolan has done a great job posting photos & notes about CBI & new students on the Dolan’s blog – dw)

Graduates News

Of the 28 CBI graduates, 15 are working with churches (10 church plants), 8 are working with other ministries (SNACK program, orphanages, Sophy’s school, etc…) and 2 are working with ministry training schools (CBI and Sokhom Hun’s school)

Evangelism Week

July 29-Aug 2nd One big group each day. Monday, we took off due to the national elections. Tuesday – a village close to TNT (not much success this time). Wednesday – one of two villages Sokhorn (Dec 2012 Grad) works with. Thursday to Takeo, a church plant KimSrauv (Dec 2012 Grad) works with. Friday about 2 ½ hours by van to a church plant Borei (July 2012 Grad) works with.

Prayer Requests/Concerns

  • All the graduates and their various works.
  • New students, they are like a deer in the headlights as they start to study.
  • License for 15 passenger vans. Still no word on our appeal.

Graduate Enrichment

We are planning to have a weekend (Thurs-Sat) seminar or retreat for our graduates. This will be a time to re-charge and build each other up.

Upcoming Classes

  • August 12-16 – Jesus the Man (Part 2) – Tol Veasna
  • August 12-23 – Ezra, Nehemiah, Esther – Dennis Welch
  • August 19-Sept 11 – Major Biblical Doctrines – Rich Dolan
  • August 19- Sept 13 – Bible Basics (new students) – Tol Veasna
  • August 26-Sept 13 – Ephesians – Dennis Welch
  • Sept 12-Sept 27 – Daniel – Rich Dolan
  • Sept 16-Sept 27 – Colossians – Dennis Welch
  • Oct 3-5 – Pchum Ben Holidays
  • Oct 7-Nov 1 – Evidences from Science and History
  • Oct 7 – Nov 1 – Biblical Intepretation
  • Nov 4-Nov 15 – 1st & 2nd Timothy and Titus – All Day

Please join our prayer that the students, graduates and staff of the Cambodia Bible Institute will faithfully fulfill their ministry to the church and to the lost.

Grace and peace – Dennis & Sharon

Posted in Bible School, Cambodia, Christian Mission Cambodia, Christianity, church of Christ, Jesus, Khmer, Khmer Bible, Khmer translation, ministry, Mission, preaching in countryside, teaching in countryside | Leave a comment

August 2013 Newsletter

For The Glory of GOD!

Greetings from Phnom Penh, Cambodia,                         Volume 8, Number 8, August, 2013

Dearest family & friends,

Praise God

A Servant Of God-1 In this issue:


  • Asian Mission Forum Khmer Bible
  • Cambodia Bible Institute
  • SNACK Program

Our five-week reporting trip in May and early June really  ACU Interns-Theary-Dennis in ChiangMaiencouraged us because we were among you; beloved family and friends who blessed us just as our Father said would happen to those who seek Him.  In like manner, traveling annually to the Asian Mission Forum is a refreshing retreat from our work and into an environment of fellow-servants in Asia of the God Most AMF-In The Beginning High.  While we all know that God is working everywhere to call people back to Himself, it strongly encourages us to personally know many of His servants blessing the peoples of nations throughout Asia.

AMF Worship Time This year’s theme for the forum was “In the Beginning.”  Our keynote speaker shared from God’s Word how so much of what we read about in the first few chapters of God’s Word has some direct applications in the church and in the individual lives of God’s children.  We praise God for the keynote lessons and the break-out classes we attended contextualizing God’s Word in Testimony-Dennis & Sharon other cultures.  They asked us to share about our personal lives and journey of faith to encourage others.  Please join our prayer that as we all continue to study God’s Word, that we will be wide-open to His Holy Spirit revealing His heart and His will for us individually, and as His bride, the church.  By the way, the servants working China are planning to host the 2014 forum in Theary @ Phnom Penh Airport Cambodia, YEAH!  It would be a great time for any of you considering a visit to come and be blessed by attending the forum with us.  Please pray about that too.

Do you remember the first time you flew?  Our first airplane experience brings anxiety or joy or both.  What will it be like?  Theary flight to ChiangMai And for some, there are those control issues with which to deal.  Our daughter, Theary just experienced her first flight in an airplane as she joined us for the Asian Mission Forum, this year hosted in Chiang Mai, Thailand.  With help from our God she conquered her nervousness.  With praises to God she loved the experience.  Can you remember your first time? Theary Traveling

While in Chiang Mai we stayed a few extra days and visited a few of the tourist spots including “walking street,” a road lined with local vendors selling anything and everything that they think a tourist might like.  Along the road the Buddhist temples allow vendors to sell food so we stepped inside to shoot this brilliant photo. Temple Worship

We can now check-off riding an elephant from our list.  As part of a full-day package, we travelled an hour out of the city to an elephant farm to experience an ancient tradition of using elephants as beasts of burden.  Our elephant loved to throw her trunk back over her head for me to hand-feed her bananas as we journeyed along the trail.  Great Elephants Like Bananas fun!  After that they transported us further up river to raft the rapids.  Because the rainy season is full-on the river was raging.  You already know how much we love this sort of activity so you know how much fun we had (and surprisingly not so sore afterwards).  Please join our prayer that we will use other times like our extra few days in Thailand to spend some time away from White Water Rafting the never-ending needs of Cambodia to refresh our spirits, rekindle our hearts and relax our bodies.  Thanks—we really need help with this one!

While in Chiang Mai, Sharon and Theary spent lots of time Theary's 1st Trip White Water Rafting shopping and doing a little buying too.  This gave Dennis the opportunity to study and prepare for his next class at the Cambodia Bible School.  Ezra, Nehemiah and Esther represent the conclusion of Old Testament history before God’s Son began to walk among us.  All three of these books reveal some great stories and important truths about God, our relationship to Him, to each other, and to those other peoples around us, including our enemies.  Dennis really enjoyed sharing these application points with the students at CBI during the two-week course.  Dennis & Theary Grading Papers At the end of the month, Dennis began teaching courses on Ephesians, a letter from Paul to the churches that dealt with remarkably similar problems to those which Cambodian Christians must face in this culture.  This represents the third time Dennis has taught this course in Cambodia and it was two years ago that Dennis began teaching in Khmer language with this course.  Please pray that our language ability will be adequate to reveal God’s love, mercy and truth to all who will listen.

2013 08 27 CBI Class August brought us many new students at the Cambodia Bible Institute as other students complete their training and move into ministry.  Seven new students have joined us from various villages, most of them sent to us by countryside churches planted by our students and graduates.  This gives these “young-in-the-faith” Christians an opportunity to grow quickly as they study God’s Word day-by-day.  Please, please pray for their faith to grow into an overflowing river of blessing to all people.

Jesus Loves The Little Children Do you love little children like Jesus loves them?  We are certainly trying.  Our modest ministry to a couple of thousand of pour, malnourished children is blessing their bodies and their spirits.  We always pray that God will use any of us who will to bless the children wherever we are so that they can begin early in life to love, honor and obey their loving Father and Creator.  The Supplemental Nutrition Aiding Cambodian Kids or SNACK Program is ministry of GRACE for Sharon Feeding Kids Cambodia to provide training in health, hygiene, nutrition and Bible to deserving children in rural environments of Cambodia.  Sharon has volunteered to serve our Lord by blessing these kids with love, nourishment and true “soul food.”  With the help of eight Cambodian Christians using three trucks they visit nine ??????????????????????????????? villages each weekday to teach and provide a nutritious food supplement to the children.  For August the SNACK Program taught 1200 children an average of about 4 times per week for a total cost of $9507.  This breaks down to about $0.50 per supplement or about $8.00 per child per month.  Current regular Village Outreach @ RA monthly contributions for the program are less than half of the monthly expenses.  Please join our prayer that God will provide all we need to sustain this ministry to the children He so dearly loves.

The SNACK Program has offered us an incredible opportunity to Sharon Treating Child @ TPR reach out to many children and their families.  We clearly see how God has opened doors through this benevolent program by first, feeding these hungry, malnourished children; secondly, building relationships of trust through showing them and their parents how much we care; and most importantly, reaching out to them, sharing the Good News of Jesus Christ, giving them great hope Sharon Helping Child @ TPR for a brighter future.  Recently, Sharon encountered a very small child in a SNACK village, severely injured by a motorcycle.  The medical care in Cambodia is very limited, especially in these remote villages.  While it was certainly a blessing to care for this child, the greater blessing was yet to come.  Several visits to care for this child later, Sharon evangelized to three of ladies who now Theary & Friends Volunteering want to start studying the Bible.  This is an ideal opportunity for our SNACK staff and Bible school students to work together once again.  We are excited to see how Jesus and His Word will transform the lives of those who seek Him.  Please join us in prayer that the faith of these villagers will grow by the mighty power of God’s Word and the help of those who serve them.

Staff Teaching the Gospel

Theary & kids having fun We live in an age of unprecedented blessings.  God has strongly, abundantly blessed America and other nations who have sought to follow after Him.  One of those blessings is digital media that allows us to report about God working half-way around the world.  We pray that our news reports encourage you to share the Kids @ TPR love of Jesus with others while God, in His merciful patience has allowed us time to do so.  The prophet Haggai said, “Build the house!” which has direct application towards building-up the church.  Nehemiah said give to those who don’t have anything to eat or drink.  Ezra studied, practiced and taught God’s Word.  Pray Without Ceasing Esther was willing to die to save others.  What will we do in the name of Jesus to serve our Lord?

Eternal love & blessings,

 Dennis & Sharon

Phnom Penh, Cambodia

you can download a .pdf copy of our August 2013 Welch’s Grapevine Newsletter HERE.

Kids Praying @ TPPTheary in AirplaneKids @ RAElephant Rides & Water Water Rafting
Posted in Bible School, Cambodia, Cambodian children, Cambodian kids, Christian Mission Cambodia, Christianity, church of Christ, Jesus, Khmer, Khmer Bible, Khmer translation, ministry, Mission, Newsletters, poor Cambodia, poor countries, poor houses, poor villages, preaching in countryside, teaching in countryside | Leave a comment

New Video, “We Sold the Race Cars”

Dennis & Sharon with Race Cars

While in the United States recently, Sunset International Bible Institute ask us to tell a little of our story concerning our choice to attend Sunset prior to moving to Cambodia.  They filmed us at the Keller church building in May 2013.

While there are many great places to receive training in missions, we will forever be grateful to every one of our dedicated, beloved brothers and sisters at SIBI and the Sunset Church of Christ for training, encouraging and blessing us during our two years among them.

We posted a YouTube link to the clip on our Videos page.  We hope you enjoy the video.  Blessings…

Posted in Bible School, Cambodia, Cambodian children, Cambodian kids, Christian Mission Cambodia, Christianity, church of Christ, Jesus, Khmer, ministry, Mission, poor Cambodia, poor countries, poor houses, poor villages, preaching in countryside, teaching in countryside | Leave a comment