Allen R. Hoke was born and raised in Mt. Pleasant, Pennsylvania, where he graduated from Connellsville Area High School. He currently works at the Duraloy steel mill in Scottdale in the maintenance department.
The Connellsville Cooperative Parish will be Allen’s first assigned as a pastor. His call to ministry is rooted in his lay ministry school experience. He loves lay school and the opportunity to learn how to better serve Jesus Christ.
Allen is married to Michelle (Seman) Hoke and they have two children, Michael and Andrew. He loves hunting and helps his brother milk dairy cows.
The churches of the Connellsville Cooperative Parish – Connellsville: Albright; Acme: Calvary; Davistown: Indian Head; Connellsville: Greenwood; Mill Run; Mount Salem; Normalville; Ohiopyle; Connellsville:Otterbein; Pennsville; Pleasant Hill; Connellsville: Wesley; and Dunbar: Wesley—serve communities around the Connellsville Area School District. The congregations have worked together in various configurations for many years; they have decided to formalize the kindred spirit that already exists among them.
Albright in Connellsville
was organized as part of the Evangelical Association and was first known as the White Rock Appointment in 1989. In 1900 a building was erected on Searson Street near Wine. The new sanctuary was built in 1930 and an education unit added in 1956. Albright will serve as the lead church in the Connellsville Cooperative Parish.
split from the Mount Olivet Evangelical Association church in 1891. It became Calvary United Evangelical Church. The building was dedicated in 1896. The church had a basement added in 1951-1952 and an educational unit in 1969 to 1972. The building was cased in brick. The church added a beautiful picnic pavilion for Vacation Bible School and church meetings.
Davistown Indian Head
Begun possibly as early as 1814, it was organized in 1831 as a member of the Evangelical Association. A frame building was erected in 1845, known as Bethlehem Evangelical church. On May 2, 1929 it was wrecked by a tornado. Plans were made to rebuild. A brick building on the opposite side of the road was dedicated on June 22, 1931.
The original planning for a Church in this section of Connellsville was done in the Crawford School Building, after a split with the First Methodist Episcopal Church of Connellsville, over the choice of where a new church was needed and should be built. McKeesport District Superintendent Reverend John J. Hill organized Greenwood on May 11, 1921 in the Old Greenwood School house on the West Side. The corner stone for the new church was laid June 14, 1922. I was dedicated on May 26, 1926. Built from native stone the Church presents an inviting appearance, Gothic structure being careered out in both exterior and interior building.
Mill Run UMC is located on PA Rte. 381 in the community of Mill Run. The congregation worships in a modern facility. The people at Mill Run support various missions, families in need and provide meals both delivered and in the church. A winter coat drive and a shoe box collection are annual events held at the church. Mill Run UMC and Indian Creek Baptist Church worship together Sunday evening
in a combined service during the school year and during the summer. The worship site alternates between the two churches. Mill Run UMC is a member of the Fayette County Sunday School Association.
The first services were held in the home of Jeremiah Stouffer. In1868 the services were moved to the Stouffer School House. The church was built in 1881 as the Stouffer Evangelical Association Church. Additions to the church were made in 1959 and 1967. The church in enjoys serving Easter breakfast and having community campfires.
As early as 1825 the Rev. James Green Sansom occasionally preached at the house of Solomon Kern. A class was formed and preaching services were held in the schoolhouse. In 1844 a society was formed and a house of worship was built. In the fall of 1863 it was consumed by fire lit by the hands of an incendiary, which was refused the hand of fellowship owing to his failure to observe its ordinances. Again the meetings were held in schoolhouses and in the United Brethren Church until a new frame church as build in 1881.
UMC is located at Sherman St. in the borough of Ohiopyle. The community of Ohiopyle is a tourist destination with the Youghiogheny River running through the town. Outdoor activities, nearby camping and whitewater rafting draw people to Ohiopyle. Though the congregation is small – it offers assistance to support organizations and its strength is fellowship among its members
Otterbein was organized in January 1901 with services held at Kooser’s Hall and Stader’s Hall. The Church was dedicated February 1, 1903. Originally, First Church, it became Otterbein Church in 1970 with the merger and on January 1, 1974 merged with Central Church which was destroyed by a fire and became the Otterbein United Methodist Church. The church holds the trust funds for the Connellsville Area Community Ministries.
The first class meeting (United Evangelical) was organized February 10, 1897 with 16 members. First services were held in the brick Union Meeting House. The Little Church on the Hill was dedicated in October 1899.
Pleasant Hill also known as Springfield: Pleasant Hill because of its history on the Springfield Circuit first held its meeting about 1875 in a schoolhouse. In 1889 a Church was built. An educational unit was added in 1955. The church loves singing and studying God’s Word.
A Methodist Class was formed in the home of Zachariah Connell, for whom Connellsville is named, in the 1790’s. It was a preaching place on the Pittsburgh Circuit. When Pittsburgh was made a Station in 1811 Connellsville became the head of the Circuit. It continued to have various Circuit relationship until 1863 when it became a station appointment. The fir Church was a stone building. Bishop Francis Asbury dedicated the partially completed binding on July 10, 1808. The church grew several other church buildings were built until it moved to its present location on Pittsburgh Street in 1925.