The Office of the Chaplain United States House of Representatives

Reverend Dr. William H. Harter

The Presbyterian Church of Falling Spring
Chambersburg, PA

Sponsor: Rep. Hon. Bill Shuster, (R-PA)
Date of Prayer: 07/10/2003

One Minute Speech Given in Recognition of the Guest Chaplain:

Mr. SHUSTER. Mr. Speaker, I rise today to welcome our guest chaplain, the Reverend Dr. William H. Harter from the Presbyterian Church of Falling Spring in Chambersburg, Pennsylvania. Reverend Harter is a graduate of Williams College, Williamstown, Massachusetts, and received his master's in education in the social sciences from Harvard University. In addition to his extensive graduate study, he received a Ph.D. in the New Testament from the Union Theological Seminary in New York City.

Dr. Harter ministered to the Catskill Mountains community in New York from 1967 to 1977, before becoming minister of the Presbyterian Church of Falling Spring in Chambersburg.

In 1977, Dr. Harter and his wife Linda, herself an ordained Presbyterian minister, settled in Chambersburg and have been active members of the community. Not only is Dr. Harter committed to the religious development of his church, he has been active in many organizations, including those devoted to helping the homeless and troubled teenagers, and has been an elementary basketball coach. He is also the current president of the Chambersburg Area United Churches.

In addition to his work in Chambersburg, Dr. Harter has participated in several organizations whose work is focused on Jewish–Christian relations and Middle Eastern affairs. He has traveled extensively in the Middle East, including 36 trips to Israel.

Dr. Harter and his wife are the proud parents of five children and the grandparents of five grandsons. The Harters have been a part of the Chambersburg community for many years, and it is an honor for me to welcome him here to the House of Representatives, and I thank him for his continued dedication to his church, his community, and his country.

Opening Prayer Given by the Guest Chaplain:

Almighty God, Creator of the Universe, we praise You this day for the gift of life. You have granted us freedom and established sovereignty in our land by the will of Your people, expressed through those elected to lead.

Bless those who gather here to consider and to act. May they be enlightened by Your wisdom, moved by Your compassion, and empowered by zeal for Your justice. Enable them to be faithful to their calling. May trust in You make them unafraid.

We assemble, Lord, in time of war.
Unless you watch over the city
the guard stays awake in vain
(Psalm 127:1).

Have mercy on us, Lord. Grant Your protecting grace. May Your perfect love cast our fear. Pour our comfort, strength, resolve, confidence and hope to this House, to all who defend freedom, and to all who humbly seek peace in every place.

In Your Holy Name, Amen.

To learn more about Members who have sponsored a Guest Chaplain, please visit the Congressional Biographical Directory