Our History

  • In 1982, a few couples from Lebanon Valley Bible Church in Campbelltown PA, led by Dale Kreider, began meeting in family homes in the Robesonia, PA area in order to plant a church. During the next two years they met in the Robesonia Library/Borough Hall with fifty to sixty people attending. When that facility was being renovated, the church group entered a rental agreement with a Berks County Senior Citizens group to share the rent of Brenner Hall, an unused building at the Wernersville State Hospital.
  • In the early 1990s the church became officially incorporated as Heidelberg Bible Church because the location of Heidelberg Township is in both Berks and Lebanon Counties. Scott Brady became pastor in September of 1990. Having been notified that the rental agreement with the senior citizens group was being terminated the church secured the rental of the North Jackson Grange, north of Myerstown, in Lebanon County. Heidelberg Bible Church called the “Grange” their place of worship for three years.
  • In the summer of 1991 the church group had secured its first permanent location for a facility and meeting place in Mt Aetna. Ten years after the church was founded, construction began on the building. The name of the church was changed to Mount Aetna Bible Church to reflect the change in physical location.
  • In July, 1994, the congregation held their first service in the fully paid for, nearly completed, new facility. The enlarged space facilitated the expansion of the children and youth programs and Sunday evenings were dedicated to these activities. The number of members had grown in this time and the church was supporting seven missionaries.
  • Ken Lightner joined the church staff in 1996 as associate pastor and served three years. In January of 2000, Timothy Bouffard became co-pastor, serving alongside Pastor Brady. During this year two Sunday morning worship services were begun to ease the crowded conditions.
  • The need for more space was clear by 2004 and two years later, with the help of church volunteers, the new education/office wing was completed.
  • In 2005 Mount Aetna Bible Church planted a church, led by one of its elders, Gerald Bashore, in the Robesonia area where it first began. This church again took the name Heidelberg Bible Church.
  • Donna LaRue was brought on staff as music/worship director in 2006 and the following year, 2007, Rick Hemphill was hired as part-time administrative pastor. By this time the congregation was supporting 17 missionaries in 15 different countries as well as several local ministries.
  • Matt Talladay, a missionary the church had previously supported, joined the pastoral staff to focus on young adult and youth ministries in early 2015.
  • In early 2017, Derek Pearsall joined the staff to shepherd music and worship ministry and other pastoral roles. Local and global missions support and involvement continued to expand as well.
  • In June 2018, Rick Hemphill retired from ministry after serving MABC for over 20 years as an elder and pastor.

Mount Aetna Bible Church continues to strive to glorify God by providing a setting where believers can gather to worship and fellowship, centered around the gospel of Jesus Christ. We seek ways to make disciples who make disciples in our local communities, throughout Western Berks and Lebanon Counties and around the world.