Christian Life pastor to retire in October |

Christian Life pastor to retire in October

Patrick Varine
Pastor Gary Simpson and his wife Renee pose for a photo.
Pastor Gary Simpson and his wife Renee pose for a photo.

When the Rev. Gary Simpson came to Christian Life Church in Trafford, the Haymaker Village neighborhood was a grassy field, and a stop sign was perfectly capable of handling traffic at the corner of Forbes Road and Route 130.

That was in 1985.

“Children who were born in the early years of my pastorate are now grown and married with children of their own,” said Simpson, who will retire Oct. 6 after 34 years at the church.

“It’s a great church with great people,” he said. “There has never been another place I wanted to be.”

Simpson was credentialed through the Berean Bible College in Missouri, and began his ministry as the assistant director at Teen Challenge of Western PA, as well as hosting a coffeehouse ministry in Pittsburgh.

Simpson’s 34 years are the longest tenure of the six pastors in the church’s 81-year history.

“I’ve been blessed to baptize almost 400 people,” Simpson said. “When someone stands in the Baptismal tank and professes their faith in Christ, that really moves me. It’s what church ministry is all about.”

Simpson plans to spend more time with his wife of 45 years, Renee, along with his three grown children and 10 grandchildren.

He added he won’t forget the children in his church flock, either.

“It’s been a privilege to watch them grow up in our church, and to see them now coming with their own families,” he said.

Simpson’s final service at Christian Life Church will be Oct. 6.

Patrick Varine is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Patrick at 724-850-2862, [email protected] or via Twitter .

Categories: Local | Penn-Trafford
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