'Slowing down' after 38 years
CROWLEY - When Reverend Loyd and his wife Patsy Singley first started their work at Northside Assembly of God, there were 37 students enrolled at the 1,500-square-foot facility.
Suffice it to say it’s grown a bit.
Currently, there, 300 students attend the school from kindergarten through 12th grade. Since the Singley’s arrived, they have overseen six additions to the property, which now includes 62,000 square feet with the school and the church combined.
“A pastor from Lafayette joked with us once that Loyd wasn’t happy unless he heard someone hammering in the background,” laughed Patsy during an interview on Friday. “Another person accused Loyd of trying to build a roof over Crowley.”
“We have seen many wonderful students graduate from our school during the past 38 years,” said Pastor Singley. “I have seen the grandchildren of former Northside Christian School graduates graduate from our school.
“I’ve dedicated babies and then dedicated their grandbabies,” he smiled.
“I think we may be getting old,” added Patsy as both laughed.
Prior to their arrival in Crowley, the Singleys were traveling evangelists who visited towns across the United States, including Alaska. After preaching in Eunice, they began looking for a place to settle down. They now beam with pride when they discuss Crowley.
“We love it here,” said Patsy. “This is our home. It is home to our children, our grandchildren and our church family.”
The Singleys acknowledge that there have been some tough times. They recalled the death of Seth Trahan, the son of Northside Christian Principal Randy Trahan, who died while fighting in Iraq in 2005, as being hard on their church family.
“Seth was a huge loss,” said Pastor Singley. “He was so close to the entire church. God helped us through it and it was an honor to dedicate our gym to him.”
After Seth’s death, churchgoers wanted to give gifts to honor him. Those donations paid for the $1.2 million Seth Trahan Memorial Gym. A plaque erected inside the finished gymnasium at the beginning of the school year depicts Trahan kneeling in uniform with the caption “He gave his all …We will never forget.”
When discussing former graduates of Northside Christian School, the Singley’s said they feel a great sense of accomplishment from former students who are now working in other parts of the world.
“We have one who is a teacher in China, many others who work as missionaries in other parts of the world,” said Pastor Singley.
Patsy Singley was sure to mention Taylor King, a recent graduate who has made several trips overseas and a former board member who is now serving in the former Soviet Union.
“God has also given us some great staff members over the years,” said Pastor Singley. “Brother Randy took over as principal in 1987 ... he’s had five children graduate from here. Our current staff consisting of Associate Pastor Gerard Morgan, Worship Leader Michelle Harris, Youth Minister Steven Burnett are just phenomenal.”
There is also his son-in-law, Rev. Ryan Post, who recently began working as Northsides lead pastor. Post is married to the Singley’s oldest daughter, Carrie, who came into their lives in 1981.
Their youngest daughter, Hannah, currently works as a nurse at Crowley’s American Legion Hospital.
“We now have five grandchildren,” said Patsy Singley proudly.
Pastor Singley is particularly proud that Northside supports 127 missionaries and ministries around the world, including works in China, Venezuela and Africa. Pastor Singley has personally traveled to countries such as India and the Philippines on missions.
“During our time here we have also brought our ministry to television and radio,” he added. “We have also held two revivals that have gotten people involved in our church. One of the highlights of our ministry has been sponsoring Jay Lowder when he came to the Rice Arena for four nights a few years back.”
“It’s been such a joyful time during these past 38 years,” said Patsy Singley. “God gets all the glory. We have nothing but good memories. It’s time for us to slow it down.”
Pastor Singley will remain with Northside as a supporting role advisor. He will also be preaching occasionally.
A retirement celebration is planned for Sunday (today) at 6 p.m. at Northside Assembly of God Church.