Early sketch of Westminster Presbyterian Church:

In the past 45+ years, Westminster Presbyterian Church has grown in numbers and Christian commitment, ministering to the needs of those at our doorstep and beyond in a variety of ways. Our church programs and missions have been many and diverse, enhanced by the varied talents of of our congregation.

In February of 1962, the Rev. Chester M. Davis was designated as organizing pastor, and plans for a future Presbyterian church in Berkeley Heights, New Jersey, progressed with the purchase of a 5-acre tract and residence known as “Lucas Corners” at Plainfield and Mountain Avenues.

The on-site house was designated “The Church House” for meetings, gatherings and offices, and many hours of fellowship, Bible study, choir practice and committee work was spent there.

The church's first worship service was held on September 16, 1962 at nearby Berkeley School. Then on October 16, a petition with 152 signatures was presented to the Presbytery of Morris and Orange for the organization of Westminster Presbyterian Church, this name having been previously chosen by ballot.

Westminster was formally organized with 185 members in December of 1962. Beginning on February 3, 1963 worship services were moved to the Hamilton Terrace School, adjacent to our property.

Rev. Robert B. Sheldon, who would serve as Westminster's pastor for 24 years, was installed on September 17, 1963. Two years later on October 24, 1965 groundbreaking ceremonies for the present church building were held.

The church's cornerstone was lain in May of 1966, and on November 20, 1966 we shared in the joyous formal dedication of the church.

Westminster Nursery School opened its doors to their very first preschool class in September 15, 1971.

Pastors of Westminster Presbyterian Church:

  • Rev. Chester M. Davis (Organizing Pastor) 1962–1963

  • Rev. Robert B. Sheldon 1963–1987

  • Rev. Robert Norris (Interim) 1987–1988

  • Rev. Charles Wiggins 1988–1996

  • Rev. Anne Benefield (Interim) 1996–1999

  • Rev. Anne Havrilla 1999–2003

  • Rev. John Luyben 2003–2006

  • Rev. Deirdre Greenwood White 2007

  • Rev. Jeffrey Cochran-Carney 2007–2010

  • Rev. Diane Ruffle 2010–present

 

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