About Me


Well, let’s start with the formal stuff…


UPDATE!: As of Spring of 2015 I have been called as the Regional Minister of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) Capital Area and will begin there June 15, 2015.  This Region of the Christian Church encompasses all of Maryland, Washington, DC, Delaware, and includes a few churches in northern Virginia and the panhandle of West Virginia.  I will conclude my 14 year tenure as Senior Pastor of Franklin Circle Christian Church in Cleveland, Ohio the end of May.

Now, here’s the former introduction:

I am the Pastor of Franklin Circle Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in Cleveland, Ohio.  I was called as a Redevelopment Pastor to this historic, diverse, urban congregation in the spring of 2001 in hopes of helping the congregation to reclaim a clear sense of its identity and to renew its mission to the community.  In April of 2004 the Region of Ohio and the congregation affirmed the workthat I and the congregation had done to revitalize the church and they called me to continue to be their Pastor.


I moved to Cleveland from New York city with my partner of (then) 10 years, the Rev. Craig Hoffman, in 2000 after a 10 year pastorate at Park Avenue Christian Church in Manhattan.  I was privileged to serve as Associate to the Rev. John Wade Payne for nine of those ten years.  While serving as Associate Pastor at Park Avenue Christian I was ordained into ministry on Pentecost Sunday, 1991.

[For a brief reference to me in a New York Times article, click HERE! Wow, 15 minutes of fame gone already!!! For a Prayer For The Family I wrote, click HERE! One of the best things I’ve ever written to get a little air time.]

In my ministry at Park Avenue Christian Church I spent time studying and developing skills in working with multi-ethnic, multi-cultural, economically-diverse congregations.  I also served for almost ten years as the Developer for the  Open & Affirming Ministries Program of the Gay, Lesbian, and Affirming Disciples Alliance. I continue to use all of these skills at Franklin Circle Christian Church.

[I am honored to have several liturgies included in the book, Shaping Sanctuary: Proclaiming God’s Grace in an Inclusive Church.  For ordering information, click on the image to the right.]

I was born and raised in Roswell, New Mexico.   I received my B.S. in Religious Education at Phillips University, Enid, Oklahoma and my M.Div., with a concentration in Religious Education, from Brite Divinity School, Texas Christian University, in Ft. Worth, Texas.  While at Brite I served for over three years as Assistant to the Pastor at First Presbyterian Church of Grapevine, Texas under the mentorship of Rev. Eleanor Cozad Cherryholmes.  I have authored articles in several journals, including DisciplesWorldHomily, and Open Hands.   My partner and I have remodeled a historic 1880’s “folk Victorian” home using environmentally-friendly and sustainable techniques and building materials.

Currently, I am on the Community Advisory Board of Lutheran Hospital.  Within the Christian Church of Ohio (Disciples of Christ) I am honored to serve on the Commission On The Ministry and as Co-Director of Advance Conference, with the Rev. Margot Connor.   In the summer of 2010 I also became President of the Adult Conference.  I have previously served on several non-profit and denominational boards, including Interfaith Partners In Action of Cleveland (InterAct Cleveland) where I served as Board President; the General Board of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) where I served on both the Administrative Committee and on the Executive Committee.   I am  a proud graduate of the Neighborhood Leadership Institute (Class 17).


4 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Jake
    Nov 02, 2010 @ 08:45:21

    Need to update your “About” page! Also, the RSS feed for comments isn’t working!


    • nearwestclevepastor
      Nov 02, 2010 @ 14:43:32

      Wow! I forget that some people actually *notice* what I do! Thanks, Jake! I am going to update the About page right now… and the comment feed only needed a first comment to work properly, so I did that!

      You are wonderful and I appreciate you so very, very much!

      Proudly Your Pastor,


      • Jake
        Nov 02, 2010 @ 19:52:33

        Totally worked! You’ve made stalking you easier!

        I might suggest a little bit of editing on your about me page before the editor of the Messenger sees it… a lot of my/his left over from the copy/paste…

  2. Tim Tramble
    Jun 05, 2013 @ 09:44:25

    Hi Allen,

    I just want to thank you very much for taking time out of youyr schedule to write a positive review about Bridgeport Cafe on yelp.com. We sincerely appreciate your review and your visit to our community. Please stop by again and bring a friend.

    Tim Tramble


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