In 1846, Resurrection Reformed Church separated from Christ Church in Middletown to become its own charge, meaning that the congregation had the financial means to support its own minister. The first pastor of the new Burkittsville Charge was Rev. George Lewis Staley. After his pastorate ended in 1848, the congregation called Rev. Samuel Philips to the pulpit. Rev. Philips was ordained at Resurrection Church in 1848 and would go on to serve the church for 4 years. In the third year of his pastorate, Rev. Philips published “Gethsemane and the Cross: Their Scene and Their Moral Significance; or the Internal and External Sufferings of Christ for Sin.” The book was addressed to the youth in his congregation, and a note in the introduction states that the proceeds from the book would go to paying a church debt.
Rev. Philips went on to publish several other books and remained a minister of the German Reformed Church until 1871, when he moved his membership to the Presbyterian Church and began a new ministry in Philadelphia, preaching in new suburban churches around the city. Rev. Philips served as a Sergeant Major in Company G, 160th Regiment of Pennsylvania Volunteers from October 3, 1862 until June 21, 1865, during which time he was promoted to Lieutenant.
Rev. Philips died in Germantown, Philadelphia on September 1, 1892, forty years after he left the pastorate of Resurrection Reformed Church in Burkittsville.