References from traditions suggest that the first congregation was formed in 1850, but there is no conclusive information to fix the exact fate. In 1865 Reverend Milton H. Hockman held preaching services in the Adams School, located near Blanco, Plum Creek Township, Armstrong County. The congregation was made up of worshipers from the "Old Stone Church"' now St. Thomas Church in Gastown, and from the Salem Congregation, near Yatesboro. After holding services for some time Reverend M. H. Hockman called a meeting in the Adams School, which resulted in the organization of St. Paul's Congregation. One resolution came out of that meeting, stating: "There shall be one Elder and one Deacon:”
The organizing congregation followed immediately with an election and chose Christian Wiegand as Elder and Noah Boyer as Deacon. One historical record notes: "Through the instrumentality of Deacon Noah Boyer the congregation took measures for building a Church, a sufficient sum of money having been already secured by exertions to justify the movement:" When the construction got underway, there were just seven men and their wives to carry the burdens of the building efforts. One writer states: "The structure was completed with great self-denial, but they persevered and finally obtained that for which they had prayed and labored."
The earliest records of the congregation were destroyed in the fire which consumed the Adams Schoolhouse sometime before 1867.
The first building was consecrated in June, 1867 and the Reverend J. G. Shoemaker preached the sermon. Assisting with the service was Jacob F. Wiant, a student from the Eastern Theological Seminary, who was supplying churches in the area during the summer vacation. Later he became the pastor of the congregation.
On August 14, 1915 at a meeting of the congregation, fourteen members voted to build anew church on the site of existing building. Through a period of three years, from the corner-stone laying in August, 1916, to the dedication of the new building on November 9, 1919, the Boyer School was used two summers for Sunday School. The plans called for a building of brick, fifty feet by thirty-six feet and fourteen feet high. The Building Committee included Jackson Harkleroad, President; J. E. Hawkins, Secretary; and T. B. Wingard..
Bricks and lumber for the new building were hauled by sixteen teams from suppliers in Kittanning. The cost of lunches for the haulers, paid by the Building Committee, was 25 cents per person. The cost of the building, completed, was $3,500. At the time of dedication of the new building there was no debt and a substantial balance was left was left in the treasury. The first service was held in the new church building on September 7, 1919. At the dedication of the new building on November 9, 1919 the Reverends R. E. Crumm and C. B. Robert conducted the services.
Improvements have been added to the building through the years. The kerosene lamps installed first in the building gave way to gasoline lamps in 1928, and then to electric lights in 1945. In 1933 some 5,000 wheelbarrow loads of dirt were excavated from the basement, with free labor. Provisions were then made for a Children's Department of the Sunday School, a kitchen and a furnace room. In 1942 and 1966 water wells were drilled, the latest to a depth of 138 feet. In 1952 the brick tower was added front of the church. In 1956 the electric organ was installed, as provided by a $500 from Mr. Ed Williams of Elderton. In 1970 new construction provided for entrances into the building on the sanctuary level and into the basement, a new Sunday School classroom and new toilet facilities.
The congregation has a communicant membership of one hundred and thirty. It is a part of the South Bend Charge (along with St. Thomas Church, Gastown, and St. Jacob’s Church, South Bend). It is a member of the Clarion Association and the Penn West Conference of the United Church of Christ. Its roots were in the former German Reformed Church, then the Evangelical and Reformed Church.
The following ministers have served: Jacob F. Waint (1869-1876); Alpha K. Kline (1876 - 1884), Addison Calvin Snyder (1886-1888); Alexander M. Keifer (1889-1890); William D. Lefevre (1891-1893); Lucian W. Showers (1894-1900); William H. Kerscher 1916-1921); Lee 0. Carbaugh (1916-1921); A. S. Kresge (1922-1923); C. L. Bash (1928 - -1928); Sarkis Papajian (1930-1934); D. Norton Nace (1935-1938); Lee O. Carbaugh (1939-1941); Raymond Strine (1946-1949); George Geisler (1949-1951); Jacob Painter (1951-1958); Alvin Master (1959-1964); John Kautz (1964-1975); Harrison Davidson (1975- ).
A husband and wife team, William Austin Boyer and Betty Mae Schrecengost, came out of St. Paul's Congregation to serve in meaningful ministries of the Lord Jesus Christ. Christ. "Bill" graduated from Shannock Valley High School in 1949, and from Franklin and Marshall College, Lancaster, Pennsylvania, in 1953. He graduated from the Lancaster Theological Seminary and was ordained as a Christian Minister in 1956.
Dale Eugene Boyer, formerly of New Kensington, a great-grandson of a co-founder of the congregation, Noah Boyer, also became an ordained Minister of the Lord Jesus Christ. Dale was graduated from the New Kensington High School in 1935, and from Duqiesne University, Pittsburgh, in 1941. He was graduated from the Lancaster Theological Seminary and was ordained in 1944.
Continuingtinuing in care ministries in a uniquely rural setting, St. Paul's United Church of Christ is truly a "country church" with opportunities for most promising growth and offerings of significant Christian ministries in the community.