RPCNA | Presbytery of the Alleghenies | Beaver Falls (Pennsylvania, USA)
Pastors: Titus Martin and Hao Lu
Ruling Elders: Herb McCracken, Keith Wing, and Barry York
Members: 167 Communicant, 68 Baptized
When Geneva College moved from Ohio to Beaver Falls, Pennsylvania in 1880, a cluster of Reformed Presbyterian Churches also sprouted in the near vicinity. College Hill Reformed Presbyterian Church first formed in 1896 and moved to its present location along Route 18 in 1924.
Initially, the church building was in College Hill, a neighbourhood of Beaver Falls. But as the footprint of Geneva College grew, the distance between the two gradually lessened, and today, the church building is actually within the campus of Geneva College.
College Hill’s senior pastor, Titus Martin, was born and raised in the Phoenix RPC (Phoenix, Arizona), where his father, Paul Martin, was the pastor. After high school, Titus headed to Geneva College in Beaver Falls, Pennsylvania to pursue a degree in Elementary Education.
Following college, he developed a hunger to know God’s Word more than ever. In God’s providence, Titus found himself at Reformed Presbyterian Theological Seminary (RPTS) in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. There he felt a growing sense that God was leading him into pastoral ministry. In June 2006 he took up the call to be associate pastor of the College Hill congregation. Since then, he married Alyssa Wing, and the Lord has blessed them with three children.
Birth of a Daughter Church
As the Lord blessed and grew our congregation, it became difficult for everyone to fit into the auditorium for worship! Session began to pursue alternative facilities. However, God closed doors for us to build a new building or add on to the old one. So, we began to consider church planting options.
At the end of 2014, the congregation purchased a church building that was a few blocks away in the neighborhood of College Hill and began holding worship services in two locations. God blessed those efforts and provided a pastor, George Gregory, in the summer of 2018. The new location was organized as an independent congregation in October 2020 and named Hope Community RP Church.
God has continued to bless College Hill RPC with growth. As more people joined, it became increasingly clear that we needed another pastor. Pastor Hao Lu was ordained and installed as associate pastor in September 2021.
Hao had come to America, from China, in pursuit of education. Yet, in the course of his studies he was converted and soon felt the call of God to pursue pastoral ministry. Hao married Amy in 2015 and graduated from RPTS in 2017.
The Lu family now numbers five, as God has blessed them with three growing children. The church rejoices in the addition of Hao as Associate Pastor and looks forward to his ministry as he serves at College Hill.
Jason Thoman, Pastoral Assistant
The leadership team also includes Jason Thoman, College Hill RP’s pastoral assistant. After 15 years serving in the military, Jason felt the call to pursue pastoral ministry and relocated to Beaver Falls with his wife Natalie and their five children. Natalie and Jason were married in 2000. Jason attended seminary at RPTS and graduated in 2020. Jason has served College Hill faithfully and with zeal as an intern over these past years and is currently working toward being licensed to receive a call.
A College Community
Many members of College Hill are local to the Beaver Falls area, and a high percentage live within a few blocks of the church building. This creates a unique community. During the college months, the church building becomes much more active with many college students looking for a church home away from home. Including regular adherents and students, there are often between 250 and 280 gathered for morning worship on a given Lord’s Day!
College Hill has developed a variety of ministry programs, some focused on the church itself and others directed to the community outside of the church walls. Because of our close proximity to Geneva College, we have multiple college-focused ministries, the largest program being discipleship and accountability groups led by members of the church. We also have a youth group program, Women’s and Men’s Bible studies, and various other local service opportunities.
God has continued to bless this congregation–although far from perfect–with great peace and many opportunities. May all her labours be for the glory of Jesus Christ and to the praise of His grace!
- Praise God for blessing us with an additional pastor! Pray that Hao and Titus would work well together and ask that the Lord would strengthen and encourage them as they shepherd the flock.
- Pray that God would continue to guide us and bless our efforts as we develop outreach to the Geneva College, College Hill, and Beaver Falls communities. Pray particularly for wisdom as we consider additional church planting options.
Lauren Kozak was born and raised in the rolling hills of Beaver County, graduating from Geneva College in 2010 with a degree in English Education. She married Roman Kozak in the summer of 2010 and after having their first child, left the teaching field to become a stay-at-home mother. In 2016, she was hired as the assistant secretary to College Hill RP church, taking over as head secretary in 2019. She and Roman now reside in the College Hill neighborhood of Beaver Falls and have a full home of four boys.