Holy ground is usually found in a crisis: Jacob running away from Esau, Moses hiding out, Joseph greeting his estranged brothers in Egypt, Paul rushing to Damascus to persecute the church, Mary & Joseph in a rude stable. Anywhere can be holy ground if we meet God there. As the poet Gerard Manley Hopkins wrote: “The world is charged with the grandeur of God.”

But it is also true that there are “thin places” in the world, where the barriers between heaven and earth seem to lift, and we sense God’s presence, perhaps in new ways. Often, these are places of memory, where we have made promises, exchanged vows, experienced fellowship, felt the panoply of emotions from grief to joy, greeted old friends, and made new ones. I hope that our church is one of those thin places for you.

The Church in the Highlands is a congregational church, with deep roots in this community. It is a neighborhood church, serving moms and dads and young families through our thriving Early Education Center, which offers a non-sectarian program for children and families of all religions and ethnic backgrounds. It is a welcoming church, seeking to live into our calling of extending extravagant hospitality and unconditional love to all.

Jesus welcomed all people to his table, and was often criticized for hanging out with the “wrong people.” At Church in the Highlands, there are no “wrong people.”

I want to extend a personal invitation to you to worship with us on Sunday mornings at 10 am. After worship, join us in our Social Hall for refreshments and fellowship. We want to hear your story. We want to accompany you on your journey of faith, and we would be honored if you would accompany us.

Life is difficult. It’s good to know that we are not alone.

I’ve been in a lot of churches. I believe that The Church in the Highlands is a very special place. I hope that after your visit you will feel the same way.

This is a house of prayer for ALL people.

No matter who you are or where you are on your journey, you are welcome here, and NO ONE belongs here more than you!


The Reverend Dr. Gary J. Percesepe



The Congregational Church in the Highlands is more than just a location or a beautiful Gothic Structure. It is a church that places its emphasis on people. We are bound together in a covenant relationship through which we sustain each other on our faith journey, duplicating the ties that sustained our Pilgrim forebears when they came to the shores of New England in 1620. Founded in 1921, the Church in the Highlands is a congregation of the United Church of Christ, a union in 1957of the Congregational Christian churches and the Evangelical and Reformed Churches. The Pilgrims were the first Congregationalists in this country. The Christian Church, founded in New England in 1801, united with the Congregationalists in 1931. The Evangelical and Reformed Church, itself a union of historic churches or German background, was founded in 1702. Congregational churches are free of overhead control. Each local congregation owns its property, call their ministers and govern their affairs by means of democratically elected leaders.

The Bible is central to our teaching and beliefs. We celebrate the common Judaic-Christian traditions that bind together all that worship Jesus the Christ as Lord and Savior. There is openness in our fellowship. Everyone is welcome, no matter their race or nationality. For us, the God we worship is One and each human being is our brother or sister.



The Church in the Highlands, as a Still-Speaking UCC, promotes a living faith and extends an extravagant welcome to all, “no matter who you are, or where you are on life’s journey.” We worship a God who is all-loving and includes everyone, just as they are. We are less interested in creeds and doctrinal differences, and more concerned with supporting each member in living out their discipleship as a follower of Jesus.

To serve the needs of our neighbors and to be a resource for our community is our local focus. With a wider purpose, we endeavor to work for a just and peaceful world, protect our planet, and address issues like racism and improved education.

We are interested in working on achieving mergers with other mainline Protestant congregations. The goal is to combine forces, drawing on all strengths, in ways that increase our impact for mission. In becoming one, we live and minister together as a vibrant and unified congregation.

Our Scripture motto is “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.“ (Philippians 4:13)


“TRADING PLACES”, a video from the UCC

Dear Friends, Today we are releasing an important new United Church of Christ video titled, “Trading Places. If you listen to most news cycles or political speeches of late, you would be left with the clear impression that people of different faiths not only hate each other, but they do so because their faith leaves them no other option. We want difference to be perceived as beauty and not as threat. Trading Places shines a light on religious bigotry in a unique way—by depicting religious leaders of different faiths experiencing the power of walking in one another’s shoes –and into one another’s houses of worship. This video is intended to tell the world who we are in the United Church of Christ and what we dream of. If you care about interfaith understanding and building a world free of religious intolerance, you will share this message. I am personally urging you today to share this video as widely as you can. Share it on your social media, embed it in your blog or website, email it to friends. If it opens up the heart of another to love in new ways; if it inspires the just peace we are committed to—then God be praised


Have a look at the Church Newsletter here.

View our Church Calendar for up to date information on what is happening at The Church In The Highlands

Rental space available for various types of events. Handicap Accessible. Please call 914-949-2023 for further information

We are looking for volunteers for our Thrift Shop. If you are interested, please call the Church Office at 914-949-2023

View our church by-laws 2015 Church By-laws

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