An Episcopal Dictionary of the Church

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Allen, Roland

(Dec. 29, 1868-June 9, 1947). English missionary and writer. He was educated at Oxford and ordained deacon on Dec. 18, 1892, and priest on Dec. 21, 1893 in the Church of England. He went to North China as a missionary in 1895 but was sent home in 1903 because of poor health. He served briefly as a parish priest until he resigned in protest over what he saw as a disregard for the meaning of baptism. Thereafter he devoted his life mainly to research, visiting overseas missions, and writing. His book Missionary Methods: St. Paul's or Ours?, appeared in 1912. He describes the apostle as visiting a selected city, imparting the gospel to converts and, perhaps only two years later, ordaining leaders so that the eucharist could always be celebrated. St. Paul would then depart, leaving behind a complete self-supporting and self-governing church under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. The Spontaneous Expansion of the Church and the Causes which Hinder It (1927) summarized much of his teaching, presenting careful arguments for a truly indigenous ordained ministry of clergy with many remaining in secular work. Allen retired with his family to Kenya during the early 1930s. The local bishop permitted him to celebrate, but felt it was too dangerous to allow him to preach.

Glossary definitions provided courtesy of Church Publishing Incorporated, New York, NY,(All Rights reserved) from "An Episcopal Dictionary of the Church, A User Friendly Reference for Episcopalians," Don S. Armentrout and Robert Boak Slocum, editors.