Dr. Tony Evans, the senior pastor of Oak Cliff Bible Fellowship in Dallas, announced he is now engaged to Dr. Carla Crummie, four years after the death of his wife, Lois Evans.
During a celebration service for the pastor’s 74th birthday, he shared the news and asked his congregation for prayer during this “sensitive time.”
“As I come up to the fourth year of the loss of Lois, my wife of 49 1/2 years, it is a tender time. There are reminders everywhere of her life and of her influence on me, my family, and this ministry,” he said during Sunday’s service.
Evans announced the news with his four children, Priscilla Shirer, Jonathan Evans, Anthony Evans Jr., and Crystal Evans Hurst, standing by his side.
“We are a very close family,” Evans said, “and all that has happened in my life, family, church, Urban Alternative, books, tapes, everything, has been defined by [Lois], so we’ve had over these four years the ups and downs and the roller coaster of emotions, sometimes high, sometimes low, but it comes with it.”
Evans thanked the congregation for their support through the pivotal transition after Lois’ death.
“And I want to just thank so many of you who have been grievers with us,” he said, “and allowed us to grieve with you on some of your times. And so that’s part of life—it’s outside of our hands. We had to put it in the hands of a sovereign God.”
Evans admitted that he had to navigate “singlehood” but that “God in His sovereignty” bought someone into his life.
He then began to introduce Dr. Carla Crummie, a Christian therapist and “Kindness Ambassador” of The Urban Alternative.
“This someone has traveled this similar road,” Evans explained. “Carla Crummie and her husband were on their way to Lois’ funeral when her husband died.”
“As I’ve tried to share the ups and downs of my life with you,” Evans continued, “I wanted to share this and give you the opportunity to meet my new fiancée, Miss Carla Crummie.”
The congregation gave Evans and Crummie a standing ovation, but the pastor asked the church to be respectful of those still grieving the loss of his late wife.
“It’s a sensitive time,” Evans reiterated. “During a time like this, you’re also reminded of loss. And so I want your sensitivity as you pray for me as we walk through this journey, as she walks through the grief that she’s had to walk through.”
As CBN News reported, Lois Evans passed away in December 2019 after battling a rare form of cancer.
Dr. Evans shared that his beloved wife had fully lived a life devoted to God, giving her life to Christ and to serving Him even while she was still a teenager. The Urban Alternative was co-founded by Lois in 1981. She is credited with helping to organize, develop, and expand the outreach of the ministry.