St. Luke's History

The land in which St. Luke's United Church of Christ (Red Hill Church) and cemetery is located was included in the famous 'Walking Purchase' of September 1737, which encouraged settlers to develop this area of Tinicum Township, Bucks County, Pennsylvania. The Red Hill Church, as it was originally called, is now in its third century of Christian witness. The church sanctuary building was started in 1766 and, thus, is one of the oldest places of worship in the United States used by the United Church of Christ. Red Hill church was included in the charge with the Deep Run Presbyterian Church at the Irish Meeting House (near Dublin, PA), and was originally built by a Scotch-Irish congregation organized in 1735, when it was known as the Tohickon Presbyterian Church.

The Red Hill Church was shared by Lutheran, Presbyterian and Reformed congregations until the early 1800's when the Presbyterians relinquished their interest. The renewed interest by the Lutheran and Reformed congregations produced a need for repairs and the construction of the one-room schoolhouse in 1843.

As enthusiasm rose and waned, so did life at the Red Hill Church, and by 1925, the congregation and church school were dissolved and the church was abandoned. For over thirty years, the church stood vacant until 1957 when interest was renewed in restoring the church. In 1959, the first services were held in the newly repaired Red Hill Church. Between 1959 and 1976, the church was used for special worship services and other events.

In 1976, the congregation of St. Luke's UCC, part of the union congregation with the Lutheran church in Ferndale, PA, undertook to reopen the Red Hill Church and build the education wing adjoining the sanctuary. Regular Sunday worship, as part of the United Church of Christ, has been conducted in the church since Easter 1977.

In 1984, the front siding was removed and the church exterior was restored. In 1986, the slate roof was replaced on the south side and the stone wall along Durham Road was repaired. In 1988, a kitchen area was installed into the old schoolhouse. In the fall of 1993, a repainting and restoration project was completed on the interior and exterior of the sanctuary building. The church steeple was added in 1998.

About The United Church of Christ

In 1957, the Evangelical and Reformed Churches united with the Congregational Christian Churches to form the United Church of Christ. Two sacraments are celebrated: Baptism and the Lord's Supper. We worship the Triune God: Creator, Redeemer and Sustainer. We acknowledge the authority of the Bible and seek to proclaim the Good News of Jesus Christ to all the world.

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