Hillcrest Presbyterian Church in America
"You did not choose Me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should remain, that whatever you ask the Father in My name He may give you." John 15: 16
Hillcrest Presbyterian Church in America (PCA) seeks to be faithful to the Scriptures, true to the Reformed faith, and obedient to the Great Commission. We strive as a church to glorify the Triune God in faithful worship, to provide consistent Biblical teaching and Christian fellowship, and to promote individual and corporate prayer. We seek to reach out with the Gospel to all mankind. Hillcrest PCA affirms the Westminster Confession of Faith, The Apostles' Creed, The Nicene Creed, and the Westminster Catechisms. We see confession of sin and the proclamation of the Gospel as essential to spiritual growth in an evangelical church. Hillcrest PCA relies on expository teaching to proclaim the Gospel of Jesus Christ in ministering to the congregation and community.
The Presbyterian Church in America (PCA) is an evangelical denomination in that we proclaim the gospel of salvation through faith in Jesus Christ. The word “evangelical” comes from the Greek word meaning “good news.” We desire all people to trust in the saving work of Jesus and enjoy eternal life in him.
"... for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ," Ephesians 4:12
Confronted by the truth of God’s Word, eighteen people began meeting together for worship in a rustic township building in Washington Township, PA in March 1975. What was eventually to become Hillcrest PCA was forming out of a desire to serve the Lord in a more Biblical way than that which they found in their former denominations.
In July of 1975 the church was organized with thirty-three members and four ruling elders. The Organizing Pastor was Richard Knodel, who had been the pastor of the PCUSA church in Plain Grove. The Church took the name Living Word Presbyterian Church. Within one year the church purchased a house and three acres of property adjacent to State Route 19 and began to plan a church building.
In 1978 Pastor Knodel left to pastor an Orthodox Presbyterian congregation in Syracuse, NY. Later that year the Congregation called Pastor Robert LaMay from Georgia. During Pastor LaMay’s tenure the artisans of the Congregation pulled together and erected a church building with a large room for worship and several smaller rooms for Christian education purposes.
In 1981 Pastor LaMay left to pastor a congregation of the Reformed Presbyterian Church of North America. In 1982 the Congregation called Jerry Maguire, who was then finishing his studies at the RPCNA Seminary in Pittsburgh. Pastor Maguire was ordained in October of 1982 and served until July of 1992 when he was called to a PCA church in Huntington, WV. During his tenure of nearly ten years, Hillcrest saw steady growth in membership and spiritual vitality. During this time the Church also adopted its Purpose Statement, and it changed its name to Hillcrest PCA to avoid confusion with a non-denominational church in New Wilmington that had adopted the name Living Word. During the last years of Pastor Maguire’s ministry, plans were laid for an expansion of the building.
In September of 1993, Irfon Hughes became the fourth pastor of Hillcrest PCA. As God blessed Hillcrest with tremendous growth, a building expansion was completed during the first two years of Pastor Hughes’ ministry, with much of the work being done by the members and friends of the Congregation. By the grace of God through the efforts of Pastor Hughes, an effective college ministry developed, which remains today. A daughter church was planted in DuBois, Pennsylvania. Pastor Hughes retired in June of 2008.
For two years, a pulpit committee sought a pastor to shepherd Hillcrest, during which time the session faithfully supplied the pulpit with qualified teachers of the Word. In October 2010, Steve Tipton was called to be the fifth pastor of Hillcrest. Since then, a daughter church has been planted in Seneca, Pennsylvania, a new fellowship hall was built, and the former fellowship room was converted into a smaller youth fellowship room, a Sunday school room and a library which has greatly expanded the functionality of the church. In May 2022 Steve Tipton accepted a call to become the pastor of Covenant Presbyterian Church in Panama City, Florida.
In October of 2018 the church called Steve Richman as our associate pastor. When Pastor Tipton moved to Florida, Pastor Richman then assumed the duties of both our Senior and Associate Pastor. In October 2022 we called Pastor Steve Richman to be the sixth pastor of Hillcrest. In October of 2023 we called Pastor Nathan Morgan to be our Associate Pastor.
Throughout our past and into our future, our elders and deacons join our pastors in loving, leading, and serving the congregation of Hillcrest Presbyterian Church.
Meet Some of Our Hillcrest Family
My wife Suzanne and I spent many years attending churches that were “Bible” believing. We made many friends and enjoyed fulfilling social experiences while attending these churches. However, we were oblivious to our weak spiritual growth and immaturity. By the grace of God, we were introduced to the Reformed church through the teaching of Ligonier ministries. From there, we went seeking a local church that met the distinctives of a Reformed church. A church in which Jesus Christ is preached through the word. One that follows the creeds and confessions of a true Christian church. We were also looking for a church in which its members are serious about living out their faith in their daily lives. We have found Hillcrest to be that church.
Choosing a church home is one of the most significant decisions you ever make--one that counts for eternity. For Suzanne and me, we have found a church home at Hillcrest. --Jeff and Suzanne