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Rev. Karen C. Allen
910.692.6252 Ext. 207
Assoc. Pastor of Congregational Care

Karen Allen is an ordained teaching elder in the PC(USA) having served on staff in Fayetteville, South Louisiana, and Saint Andrew Presbyteries before coming to Brownson Church as Associate Pastor.

Karen graduated with a B.S. in recreation administration and physical education with a minor in biology from Appalachian State University in Boone, NC. During college, Karen completed four internships which contributed valuable experience for the 25 years of service she later gave as a church camp director. Karen graduated from the Presbyterian School of Christian Education (Union Presbyterian Seminary) in Richmond, VA in 1980 with a M.A. in Christian Education. She completed further requirements to become a PC(USA) Certified Christian Educator in 1983. These experiences provided a broad foundation for ministry as an educator and director of camp and conference ministries in Virginia, North Carolina, Louisiana, Illinois, and Mississippi where she has both lived and worked.

As an adventure-seeker, Karen spent her summer after college hiking the Appalachian Trail. She spent eleven weeks hiking the portion she had not yet completed – the northern half. Karen has led spiritual renewal events for youth and adults during adventures such as canoeing in the wilderness of Canada. These, and similar programs attracted participants from many churches and states beyond the presbyteries where she worked. Using her experiences in organizing trips, she put together faith enrichment journeys to Greece, Turkey, Israel and Jordan.

While working on the Presbytery staff, she was a national consultant for church camps throughout the PC(USA); she served on the National Board of the American Camping Association and on the ACA National Accreditation Standards Board. She developed curriculum for church camping in an ecumenical effort through the National Council of Churches and worked with a PC(USA) team to develop evangelism curriculum for youth ministries. 

After productive and fulfilling years of camp and conference ministry, Karen felt a call to return to seminary. She continued to work on the staff of St. Andrew Presbytery in Oxford, MS while attending Memphis Theological Seminary in Memphis, TN where she graduated Summa Cum Laude earning her M.Div. in 2002. She was given the Mary Elliott Miller award for outstanding female graduate.

Prior to her call to Brownson Church, Karen also served as a Hospital Chaplain for Methodist Hospital, a large system with six hospitals serving the metropolitan Memphis, TN area.

Karen has worked on various boards and committees including Presbytery Council, Committee on Ministry, Preparation for Ministry, and the Board of Directors for the Sandhills/Moore Coalition for Human Care.

Since coming to Brownson, after years of focus on education, Karen felt a call to shift her ministry to congregational care. Her work as Associate Pastor spans from worship, teaching, and leadership development to providing support for caring ministry teams.

Karen loves traveling adventures with her husband Robert (and their dog Jodie). She likes hiking, camping, canoeing, reading, swimming and singing.  


Last Published: March 9, 2020 3:36 PM