October 10, 2021 has been a very special day in the life of Highland United Presbyterian Church. Over the past 10 months, we have been blessed with the addition of many members from the former Presbyterian Church of Perry Valley. The transition was complete today as we dedicated items from PCPV to the Glory of God and the enhancement of the Congregation of HUPC.
As you enter the Meeting Place of Highland United Presbyterian Church, you are now greeted with the sight of an antique oil lamp mounted in the ceiling of the hall leading to the Narthex.
This lamp was found in the attic of PCPV in the 1980. It dates to 1879, and the manufacturer is unknown. It was then installed in the Sanctuary and lit on Christmas Eve for Candlelight Services.
Next, a painting entitled “Christ Knocking at the Door” is now installed in the Narthex at HUPC.
This painting was done by local artist Andy Loy and given to PCPV in 1954. It graced the back of the Sanctuary behind the pulpit and choir area.
We also dedicated the bell from the Church. It was given to PCPV in 1949 and had previously been part of the old Millerstown school building. It is now located to the left of the main entrance of HUPC in our flower beds.
We have various other items we now use from Perry Valley – Communion chairs are expanding our seating capacity in the Sanctuary, the beautiful communion set which takes a modern twist on pottery elements is part of our worship, and Pastor Nancy’s desk is in her office at Highland United.
We also honored and remembered Highland United’s wonderful music program and the musicians whom have made it possible. First, we memorialized the man who shaped the acoustics and envisioned a Sanctuary filled with music. Barner Swartz, former choir director of the Millerstown Presbyterian Church, and then Highland United, was remembered by naming the piano he worked to obtain in order to assure it was available to future musicians. Barner, the former band director and music teacher at Greenwood High School, blessed us with his teaching and improving our choir.
Two of the folks who have driven Barner’s dream (and Janet Clark’s continued vision) were honored and thanked, though not nearly enough. Our Music/Choir room will forever be known as the Brunner Tressler Music room, to pay tribute to the two women who have kept our music flowing from the Newport church, to Highland United, and beyond as choirs and hand bells have graced services at PCPV and Westminster as part of the Juniata Valley Shared Ministry. Wendy Brunner and Peg Tressler give musical voice to the worship of God, and for them we shall be forever grateful.