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Current Pastors


Pastor Leonard C. Rier Jr. is the Pastor of United Baptist Church of Harrisburg, PA.  He served as Assistant Pastor from 1983 until 1995.  On April 23, 1995, he was installed as Pastor.  His parents, the late Elder Leonard C. and Sara Jane Rier, brought him up in a Christian home in a tight-knit community just outside of Steelton, PA, called Oberlin.  It was there that he spent idyllic childhood days playing on baseball fields, attending community schools and enjoying close family and friends. 

He is a graduate of the 1972 graduating class of Central Dauphin East High School.  From there, Pastor Rier, began matriculating at Harrisburg Area Community College.  He subsequently transferred to Southern University A & M College in Baton Rouge, LA where in 1978 he received his Bachelor of Science Degree in Biology.  He holds a Masters Degree in Pastoral Theology from Andersonville Theological Seminary and is currently pursuing a Doctorate of Pastoral Theology.

Pastor Rier answered the call to the gospel ministry in 1978; preaching his initial sermon on April 1, 1979.  He was ordained in 1983 under the examination of the Elders of the 2nd National Ketoctan Primitive Baptist Association in Harrisonburg, VA.

Pastor Rier and wife Lanie have been married for 33 years.  He is the father of 2 sons, 2 daughters and 3 grandchildren.  He is passionate about ministry and works hard at his commitment.  Under his leadership, United Baptist Church has been able to thrive in the midst of changing and adverse cultural and economic challenges.  His ministry is as a lighthouse in a dark place to show the constant love and care of our Savior.  Through it all, he stands firm to live like Christ, to love like Christ and keep his hand to the gospel plough.

Pastor Rier is a loyal, faithful, kind and a thoughtful friend to all.  His vision is to see lives positively changed through Jesus Christ.  He is a life-long learner and teacher of the Word of God and preaches to be relevant to a changing world.  He desires to see souls won for God and to see maturity in the people of God as he works to further the Kingdom of God.  Through encouraging increased fellowship, community outreach and giving of self, Pastor Rier is accomplishing the vision God has entrusted to him.  Pastor Rier is a true man of God who strives daily to accomplish this mission for God – “EACH ONE, REACH ONE”, understanding that without God he can do nothing.


Asst Pastor. Lanie M. Rier is the third of eight children born to the late James and Mildred Coleman.  She was educated in elementary and high schools in Shreveport LA and after graduating  salutatorian from Mary McLeod Bethune Jr. & Sr. High School, she went on to attend Southern University & A & M College – majoring in Medical Technology and Biology.

Pastor Lanie holds a B.A. in Biblical Studies from Andersonville Theological Seminary, Camilla GA, and is currently pursuing a Masters of Divinity.  On June 23, 1979, Rev. Lanie gave her heart and her hand in marriage to her wonderful husband Rev. Leonard C. Rier, Jr. who is the Pastor, of the United Baptist Church of Harrisburg PA.  She is the mother of 2 sons, 2 daughters and 1 playful Shih Tzu and is the grandmother of three.  She believed and responded to the Gospel message and was baptized at the young age of 8 years old; however it wasn’t until she was 24 years of age that she completely surrendered her life and her will to the Lord and made the commitment to live for Him.


After much struggle, Rev. Lanie accepted God’s call to ministry in September 2002, and preached her initial sermon on the 2nd Sunday in April, 2004 titled “New Wine, New Bottles”.  She was licensed the 4th Sunday in September of 2004.  On June 22, 2008, after examination before a body of elders, she was ordained into the gospel ministry.  

Rev. Lanie has served her church as Primary, Sunday school Teacher and teaches Wednesday Night Bible Class and New Members’ Classes and is active in Women’s Fellowship ministries.  She has discipled and counseled young women and shares in pre-marital counseling with her husband.  She is certified in Prison Ministry Fellowship.

Her challenge: Radical – Relevant and Authentic Christianity. 
Her purpose: To help people come to know God experientially and to connect to Him individually.
Her desire:  To Praise and to Worship Him, now with all of her being.


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