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History of the Pilgrim Holiness Church of Twin Rocks

1129 Station Road Rt. 271 North
Twin Rocks, PA 15960
(814) 749-0907
Directions to Church:
Church is in the village of Twin Rocks, on Rt. 271 North,
between Rt. 22 and Rt. 422. One-half hour
north of Johnstown, PA; 1/2 hr. east of Indiana, PA;
and 1/2 hr west of Altoona, PA. Parking is in rear
of bldg, at end of gravel alley off Expedite Rd.


Twin Rocks, Pennsylvania

Almost 80 years ago, three men were led by God to begin a holiness church in the small community of Twin Rocks, PA. In 1929, Rev. E. J. Wolfe, Rev. Clay P. Burkey, and Mr. Oliver R. Wilson began holding services in a rented store room, which they later bought.

This church became known as the Twin Rocks Gospel Mission. About 10 years after the congregation began meeting, the former store building was remodeled in order to make it look like a church. Rev. Burkey pastored the congregation until 1943.Our current group of worshippers is blessed to include relatives of two of the original founders. Rev. Burkey's daughter-in-law Ruth (Roger) Burkey, age 80, attends every service, and several members of the Wilson family, ages 14 to 89, still make this their church home.

On December 28, 1947, during the pastorate of Rev. Evalene Walker, the church was organized as a Pilgrim Holiness Church with 17 members.

In 1949, Rev. John W. Landrum began the first of his three separate tenures as our leader. Understandably, his name is the one most mentioned in conversation with local people who either simply remember his time here, or even attended during one or more of his terms. Under his leadership, the congregation outgrew the church structure, and a building project was begun. Rev. Landrum and others built a new church over the old one in such a way that worship in the old sanctuary was uninterrupted during construction. After the new building was completed, the original church was removed.

After the Pilgrim Holiness and Wesleyan Methodist Churches merged in the late 1960s, the Twin Rocks congregation chose to affiliate with the Pilgrim Holiness Church of New York. Pastors over the years have included Rev. and Mrs. Walter McMinn, Rev. and Mrs. David Greene, Rev. and Mrs. Dale Blair, Rev. and Mrs. George Shull, Rev. and Mrs. Daniel Gehman, Rev. and Mrs. C. H. Stearns, Rev. and Mrs. Dallas McKendree, Rev. and Mrs. James Hallenbeck, and Rev. and Mrs. Raymond Zeigler. Our current pastor and wife, Asa and Marlene Sherman, have been with us since October 1999.

Their daughters Marlaina and Hope joined the family in May 2000 and September 2002, respectively. The Shermans especially enjoy the daily interaction with friends and neighbors that comes with living in a small town. Pastor Sherman also finds great fulfillment in ministering to children and youth.

At present, our church is considered an "unorganized" home mission church. Our numbers are small; attendance averages for the past year are as follows: Sunday school 19, Sunday morning worship 16, Sunday evening worship 5, and midweek prayer meeting 5.

As of this writing, in June 2008, our congregation is facing critical issues physically, financially, and spiritually. We would appreciate very much your prayers for God's guidance and help.

Churches all around us are closing. In the little village of Twin Rocks alone, two congregations have ceased to exist in less than 10 years. Only our church and the Roman Catholic church remain. Please pray that the Holy Spirit may once again be poured out upon our people so that we may continue proclaiming the good news of salvation to the children, young people, and adults of this area.


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