ABOUT US

Welcome to Wayside! We’re glad you’re taking a moment to look over our ministries, and we hope you’ll join us sometime soon in person.  There’s something for everyone here including two worship styles to choose from, Sunday and weekday programming, LOGOS adult/children’s ministries, a variety of worship groups, local, regional and international mission projects to get involved in, and “faith, friends and fellowship” to discover. We offer a variety of ways to connect under Wayside’s Four Ws – Welcome, Worship, Wisdom & Witness. We invite you and yours to join us as we live out Wayside’s vision of “a vibrant community of Christian warmth and joy, where God is glorified through growth of our congregation, care of the souls entrusted to us, and spiritual service to our neighbors.”


It is our hope this page answers three basic questions. We want to make sure that you understand the personality of Wayside Presbyterian, how we serve God, and our values. We would love for you to visit us! 

  • Who is involved in working with Wayside?

  • What does Wayside stand for?

  • What are people saying about Wayside?


OUR MISSION

Wayside is committed to being a strong community of faith, committed to knowing Christ and making Him known ... where God is glorified through Growth of our Congregation, Care of the Souls entrusted to us and Spiritual Service to our neighbors.Presbyterians trace our roots to the Protestant Reformation of 16th century Europe. As “People of the Book”, we hold the Word of God contained in the Holy Bible to be authoritative, and draw from our Book of Confessions and Book of Order (together forming the denomination’s constitution) in discernment, teaching, and governance under the leadership of elders or “presbyters”. A church solidly within the Reformed tradition, Wayside is “always reforming” in response to the community’s needs, while stressing the grace and sovereignty of God in Jesus Christ and the importance of love and service among God’s people.




Our Core Values in a W.O.R.D.

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Word of God above all

The Bible is the blueprint on how we should live our lives. We strongly believe that if we follow the Word that we will grow stronger as a community, and close to God. We rely heavily on what the Bible says so that we may not stray away from the path that God has set before us.

Outreach to our community

Wayside's Outreach Committee develops programs that bring fellowship to our community and to our members, and which address the diverse needs of those within and outside our congregation throughout the year.

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Relationships with all ages and stages of faith

As long as we love one another we will grow stronger as a community of believers. We promote a sense of family and fellowship within the Wayside congregation as well as encourage the integration of visitors and new members into the life and work of the church.

Development of disciples


We feel strongly that actively engaging in fellowship activities, leadership and spiritual groups, and helping others to interpret His word is important to the spiritual and congregational growth of Wayside.  

faith, fellowship, friendship

OUR TEAM

Rev. Dr. Steve Fritz

Pastor

BIOGRAPHY

Our Pastor/Head of Staff, the Rev. Dr. Stephen P. Fritz, has served the Wayside congregation since the summer of 2000.  After living in Kentucky and Okinawa during his father’s active duty chaplaincy with the U.S. Army, his developmental years were spent in New Jersey where he attended Barrington Elementary School, Haddon Heights High School, and Rutgers University. Steve and his wife Meg were married in 1979 and have three adult children, two daughters-in-law, and two grandchildren. Committed to family and Wayside Church, they built a home with Steve’s parents in 2002 here in West Hempfield. Pastor Steve holds a Master of Arts degree in Clinical Psychology from Fairleigh Dickinson University, a Master of Divinity degree from Princeton Theological Seminary, and a Doctor of Ministry degree from Pittsburgh Theological Seminary. Ordained in 1989, Steve has served pastorates in West Jersey Presbytery (Providence Presbyterian Church), Shenandoah Presbytery (Keyser Presbyterian Church) and now Donegal Presbytery, where he is active with the Connecting our Ministry Committee (COM).  Prior to his call to be a Minister of Word & Sacrament, Steve worked in special education, drove limousines and a school bus, and was a probation officer. Always continuing his education and having fun whenever possible, his hobbies include outdoor ventures and tending the property with Meg, British mystery television, singing and playing guitar, cooking and working out at the gym to stay fit.


Michael Bright

Youth Coordinator

BIOGRAPHY

Michael hails from Maryland, growing up in a Baptist tradition, and is a recent graduate of Lancaster Bible College with a Bachelor of Arts in Spiritual Formation & Discipleship and Biblical Studies. 

 

While finishing his studies, Michael spent time in internship at First Presbyterian Church of Lancaster.  We love the energy, love of the Lord, background, theology and biblical knowledge that Michael brings to us, and look forward to partnering with him in ministry. 

 

He has a passion for the work of God in Jesus Christ in the life of the Church and every individual believer.  He plans to nurture this through Biblical Literacy training, community outreach and service, and exposure to various spiritual disciplines and practices to help them encounter God and grow as healthy and thriving Christian young people.


Sonja Eckert

Elementary Coordinator

BIOGRAPHY

Sonja was born and raised here in Lancaster County.  She currently resides in Millersville with her husband, two children, dogs and chickens!

She graduated from Lancaster Catholic High School in 2005.  Sonja then went to Millersville University and majored in Sociology.

 

Sonja has worked in a variety of children’s programs throughout Lancaster, Penn Manor and Hempfield school district.   Her passion to provide a nurturing environment for children to learn and grow in has evolved and matured over the years due to her experience with so many wonderful kids.

 

Her off-the-clock interests include getting dirty in the garden, rocking out to music, family excursions, dates with friends, kid’s crafts and making messes!

Janelle Pabon

Music Director

BIOGRAPHY

Janelle is a 2004 graduate of Berklee College of Music, graduating Summa Cum Laude with a Bachelor of Music degree.  She has strong educational experience is professional music, song writing, and vocal performing. 

 

Janelle was the sole Music Director for New Life Christian Fellowship since April, 2013, where she was in charge of planning and producing their Sunday worship services, special holiday and praise services, and Wednesday evening rehearsals.   Before that, Janelle was the Music Director for the East Northport Christian Church in East Northport, New York, for seven years. 

 

Janelle has provided private voice and piano lessons, teaching beginners to advanced students how to maximize their musical potential.  Wayside is truly blessed to have her talents enhance our services.

Lynn Rising

Administrative Secretary

BIOGRAPHY

Lynn Rising serves as Wayside’s administrative assistant. She is a graduate of West Chester University and has worked in libraries, schools, and a Presbytery Resource Center. Most recently she served as coordinator of the AmeriCorps Program at Salisbury University.

 

Lynn and her husband moved to Lancaster County from the Eastern Shore of Maryland in June of 2015. She enjoys reading, walking, cooking, and spending time with her family. She is a lifelong Presbyterian and enjoys working with and serving the Wayside congregation!


OUR HISTORY

Wayside Church was initiated in the early 1980’s by lay people who wanted a part in sharing the love of God in the rapidly growing area of “the Hempfields” – northwest of the city of Lancaster, Pennsylvania – through a Presbyterian mission.

Organized on June 2, 1985 by Donegal Presbytery of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), the congregation sought out suitable property and soon built its first-phase facility on eight open acres of beautiful Lancaster County countryside in the village of Landisville.

With growth of the congregation came the second phase of building in 2005 – a multiuse sunlit Atrium, larger kitchen, spacious nursery, and a new classroom wing. Wide lawns give way to a ball diamond used by the church softball team and other community organizations.

Plans for the future include a permanent sanctuary. Fully accessible and tastefully decorated, our single story facility reflects the fresh and bright spirit of the people.