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Paradise Reformed Church

Paradise Reformed Church, built in 1859

From the writings of Ronald F. Pleegor:

In 1804, John Christ sold 2 acres of land to John Stahl Jr., Michael Kuhns and John Dieffenbacher, trustees of the Paradise congregation, for church and school purposes, and also to be used as a burial ground. This is the ground where the sexton house and the old part of the cemetery are now.

In 1809, a log building was erected to serve as a church and school. The church was known as “Christ Church” and the school as “Eschbach’s School”. In 1824, the present sexton house was built as a “Union Church” by the Paradise Lutheran congregation and the Paradise Reformed congregation. In 1859, the Reformed congregation built the present church on ground purchased from Conrad Menges, Jr. The Lutherans remained in “Christ Church” until about 1900 when the building was sold at auction, to Seth Hill. In 1902, he sold it to the Reformed Church, and it became the sexton house.

From Bits of Area History by William G. Murdock, The Milton Evening Standard, July 3, 1954: The church is situated several miles southeast of Turbotville. Religious services of this congregation were held as early as 1804 by Rev. John W. Ingold, who made occasional visits through this area. In summer time services were held in barns or under the trees, in winter time in the homes. In 1808 a large one-story log building was erected, which served as both church and schoolhouse. In 1824 a brick church was built. This was used by the Lutheran and Reformed congregations, and was built through their united efforts. In 1861 the Reformed congregation withdrew from the union church, selling their interest to the Lutherans, and erected the present Paradise Reformed church building. The early services were conducted in German.

In the Paradise Reformed church cemetery are buried Michael Koons of the Revolution; David Krepps, George Koons, George Ritter and Captain Jacob Shultz, all of the War of 1812; Charles Balliet, 7th Pennsylvania Cavalry; Hiram Bergenstock, 131st Pennsylvania; B. F. Kramer, 14th Pennsylvania, and Peter Seiler.

Lawrence Foust, whose father was the sexton of the Paradise Reformed church, and who lived in the old brick church which had been changed into the sexton’s house, after teaching in several of the nearby country schools, became a minister in the West, and died several years ago at the home of his son in Wisconsin, at the age of eighty-nine.