History of Reaville Church

This church was built in 1738, and moved to its present location in 1838.  Before 2006, it was a Presbyterian Church.


How we got started as Reaville Church, Inc.

Our First Year in Review

December 31, 2006: We were all heartsick over the closing of the Amwell First Presbyterian Church of Reaville by Presbytery. (The First English Presbyterian Church of Amwell at Reaville)

2007-2009 Irvin and Vilma Hockenbury attended a number of Churches in the Amwell Valley and settled in at the Linvale United Methodist Church.

Summer of 2007: Irvin saw an article in the Hunterdon County Democrat that Presbytery was trying to get ownership of the ground next to the church and that they were going to the Freeholders.

(The deed restriction came about because in the 2 years it took us to gain title to the Kaim property the Presbytery put through a law that they owned all the Presbyterian Churches lock, stock, and barrel. Judge Jacob Chance, our lawyer, put into the deed that if Presbytery were to close the Amwell First Presbyterian Church within 50 years that the ground be given to the Freeholders for a community park. - The freeholders voted to give the deed to the ground back to the persons who owned it originally – ourselves.)

March 2008: We received title to the ground next to the church.

March 13, 2009: We received a phone call from a person named Mark Halper who had an option to purchase the church building from Presbytery. He left his phone number and wished to speak to Irvin.

Negotiations went back and forth on and off for months. There were many prayers and just when it seemed that we should back off someone would encourage us to continue. Our friend Roger Kunpel said to Irvin, “I never regretted doing something I felt I should do, even if it didn't work out.  But I had regrets when I felt I should do something and didn't do it”

July 28, 2009 We incorporated as Reaville Church, Inc. so that the church building could be purchased in the church's name. The name Reaville Church, Inc. came about because our son Kurt saw an article in the in the New York Times from the 1800's and it said how a storm blew off the roof of the Reaville Church. Our family felt that if it was called the Reaville Church
in the 1800's and if the powers in Trenton said it was okay, then that would be the church's official name, Reaville Church, Inc. Officers Elected: Irvin E. Hockenbury, President; Bruce E. Hockenbury, Vice President; & Vilma H. Hockenbury, Secretary/Treasurer.

August 6, 2009: Reaville Church, Inc. took title to the church building Block 82 lot 12

August 31, 2009: Zoning Certificate of Re-occupancy

A Pennsylvania Dutch saying goes - “Many hands to help make work light.”  These were busy days. Mary Ringer cleaned the church from the Sanctuary to the Kitchen, including all the dishes! Kenny Buck spent many hours patching walls and painting. Bob Edwards got chairs donated to us from a local business person. John Wormke helped with setting up the Manger Scene in time for our 1st Christmas. The members of the Dart Team helped with the weeding of the overgrown front of the church, as well as volunteering at our Yard Sales. John  Bradshaw made signs for our outdoor sign. Our Linvale brethren not only supplied a preacher and pianists on occasion, but also did a lot of baking for our November 22nd Dedication Service. Then there is the professional landscaper, James Rizza, who came after the weeds had been removed and trimmed the bushes, planted flowers, and mulched around the church. There are many people who have lent us a hand, and not all are listed here, people who greeted, baked, worked as ushers, and more, the Lord knows you and will bless you for your prayers on our behalf, and we are thankful for all who have given us financial support. We appreciate all the help, all have served the Lord by volunteering their services including 5 ministers and 4 pianist.

October 2, 2009: Passed our Fire Inspection

Word went out to the church community around us... Old Rocks gave us the Blue Hymnals – “Great Hymns of the Faith”. The Titusville Presbyterian Church gave us the Green Hymnals -
“Celebration Hymnals”. Betty Jane Hunt from Old Rocks donated the picture of the Last Supper that hangs in the narthex.

The Lord's Hand: Receiving our CO, Fire Inspection, and able to have our very 1st Church Service by the first Sunday in November 2009!

November 8, 2009: 1st Church Service. Rev. Leo Zaleta preached.
November. 22., 2009 2:00 p.m. Church Dedication Service. Rev. George A. Lynch preached.

January 31, 2010: The Parsons family, from Linvale UMC, donated Pew Bibles. Les Parsons came to the service and it turned out that there was no heat upstairs, so we quickly set up worship in the church basement fellowship room.

April 24, 2010: Church Yard Sale – Good spring weather - $649.10

April 29, 2010: Gulbransen Organ – Dart Team members, Bruce Hockenbury, John Kubicek, John Wormke, and Irvin Hockenbury traveled in two trucks to Hellertown, PA to pick up the donated organ, thanks to the contact through Rev. Dr. R. Wm. Shaub & Titusville Presbyterian.

September 1, 2010: Our Hope Christian Academy a 501c3 started their school year at our facility. Kathy Moser is the Principal of the School and can be reached at (908) 938-5286 or officeislandofhope7@gmail.com

September 17, 2010: Turned over the ownership of the ground, Block 82 Lot 7.02 to the Reaville Church, Inc. for $1.00.

September 19, 2010: Community Picnic -A group of about 50 people enjoyed eating a Pot Luck picnic out in the church yard with beautiful late summer weather.

October 9, 2010: Church Yard Sale – Great weather - $467.09 There were many community wide Yard Sales throughout the area.

October 29, 2010: Pumpkin Hunt – Approximately 30 children in a crowd that totaled at least 70 persons came inside following the hunt to enjoy some donuts, cider, hot chocolate, and coffee.

November 7, 2010: Dedication of Communion Trays donated by Rev. & Mrs Peter Gilbert and Rev. George Lynch and Jeannette Lynch.

November 7, 2010: 4-6 p.m. The Beth Coleman Band entertained us with Bluegrass, Country, and Gospel Music to help celebrate our 1st Anniversary as Reaville Church, Inc.

We have held church services each Sunday since we opened with the exception of a snow closing on December 20, 2009 due to heavy snow.

We now look forward to the future of our church being a witness for, and serving Christ in our Reaville community.