Pentecostal Churches of the Apostolic Faith
Bishop Alfred Singleton was born the third oldest of seven children. His father and mother (Willie and Verona Singleton) had five boys and two girls. He was born and spent his early childhood in the heart of dixie…Montgomery, Alabama. Alfred began school perhaps as the typical youngster normally does by showing up for class, getting good grades, getting some not so good grades, doing average work, and moving right along. He received what he termed a sporadic education. However, in his later years he had a tremendous quest for knowledge. After completing his elementary education, he immediately enrolled in the Cass Technical High School. This being a technical school, it offered him a greater educational option and advantage in the career mart. After Cass he went on to attend Southwestern Adult School in Detroit, Michigan.
Bishop Singleton’s biblical education was enhanced by the late Bishop S.N. Hancock, who for four years, schooled him in the knowledge and practical application of the Holy Scriptures. (It has been said that during this time Bishop Hancock was listed as one of the nation’s top Bible scholars at an institute in Texas.) Later after tutorship, he found it necessary to take on correspondence courses at the La Salle University in Chicago, Illinois, thus appeasing his great quest for knowledge. Alfred Singleton married Elizabeth M. Hawkins of Detroit, Michigan, February 24, 1951 the Lord blessed this union with twelve children.
Bishop Singleton, was a member of a Methodist Church, however, he did receive catholic teachings. He comes from a long line of ministers, dating back to his great uncles. His younger brother is also a member of the clergy. He moved to Detroit, Michigan and while there visited the Greater Bethlehem Temple Church, 2238 Clinton. He was baptized in Jesis’ Name in March of 1949. Later he received the gift of the Holy Ghost on April 17, 1949 under the late Bishop Samuel N. Hancock who was the pastor of the church. After receiving the Holy Ghost, he decided to dedicate himself to the learning of his new found faith. So he readily engaged himself in the quest for knowledge by fasting, praying, and learning the apostolic doctrine. He recalls: “There were many nights when I would pray all night long at church.” He holds an honorary doctorate degree in Theology and is the Chief Executive Coordinator of the Michigan Campus of the Midwest Apostolic Bible College.
Alfred Singleton’s ministry began two years after he had embraced this truth. He was in the Army at the time that the Lord dealt with him in regards to the ministry, He recalls the happening as being a mystery at first. “This happening was a mystery, I told Him, ‘Lord if you want me to preach, knowing my inability to preach, you will have to let me know and someone else too.’ In 1958, he held that God had called on him to move to California. During this time he experienced great sorrow. Being heavy of heart, he managed to inform his pastor, (Bishop Hancock), of this calling. Bishop Hancock is noted as saying with tears i his eyes…”whether it be my wife or my assistant pastor, I always want to make God first in my life.” The young man’s resignation was accepted and Bishop gave him his blessing.
In December 1958, he arrived in Los Angeles, California not knowing what to do or what doors would be opened to him. He started with house to house prayer. As a result of his obedience to a divine will, the doors of the Greater Bethlehem Temple were opened there in 1959, (a year later). He was also successful in founding and organizing the Bethlem Temple Church of Monrovia, located at 445 Monrovista Street in Monrovia, California. Another Temple was founded some time later in Harbor City.
In 1961 he was promoted to District Elder, and became a bishop in 1964 at the young age of 36 (one of the youngest in the PCAF). Having lived in California for 13 1/2 years, Bishop Singleton was made aware of the change that was soon to take place. He felt that God was once again calling him, this time to come back east. Having a family and not knowing just what and where God wanted him, he came to Cincinnati, Ohio and attended the Mid-Winter meeting. While in attendance he was invited to Lansing, Michigan to visit a church that was open for a pastor. Taking District Elder Eugene Thompkins’ advice, he went to Lansing, and immediately he knew that he was in the right place.
In March 2000, at the Midwinter Convention that was held in Atlanta, Georiga, Bishop Singleton was elected and voted upon by the Board of Bishop’s and District Elders as the unanimous choice, for the seat of the Presiding Bishop of the Pentecostal Churches of the Apostolic Faith. In March 2001, at the Midwinter Convention in Florida, Bishop Singleton was installed as the Presiding Bishop of the P.C.A.F.