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Dr. Holly Catterton Allen

Dr. Holly Catterton Allen is Professor of Family Science and Christian Ministries at Lipscomb University in Nashville, Tennessee where she holds a joint appointment in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences and the College of Bible and Ministry. She teaches undergraduate courses such as Early Childhood Development and Family Ministry. Dr. Allen has previously taught at John Brown University, Biola University, and Abilene Christian University.

Dr. Allen's areas of scholarly interest are children's spirituality and intergenerational issues. Her most recent book (with Christine Ross) is Intergenerational Christian Formation: Bringing the Whole Church Together in Ministry, Community, and Worship (InterVarsity Press, 2012); the book is now in its fourth printing.  (See http://www.ivpress.com/cgi-ivpress/book.pl/code=3981)

Dr. Allen is president of The Society for Children’s Spirituality, the board that convenes the national, cross-denominational Children’s Spirituality Conference: Christian Perspectives; it last met June 8 – 10, 2016(see www.childrensspirit.org ). The book from the second (2006) conference, Nurturing Children’s Spirituality: Christian Perspectives and Best Practices (Cascade), was released in 2008 with Dr. Allen as the editor. The Children’s Spirituality Conference will convene again in June of 2018 at Lipscomb University.

Additionally, Dr. Allen is currently leading a new task force that is planning the inaugural InterGenerate Conference; InterGenerate is an international, cross-denominational gathering on intergenerational ministry that will take place June 25-27, 2017 at Lipscomb University in Nashville, Tennessee. Interest is building across the United States, Canada, and Australia (and around the world) among churches and in seminaries especially in regard to the unique academic/practitioner nature of the conference.

Dr. Allen has published articles in Christian Education Journal, Lutheran Education, and Lifelong Faith, Christian Scholar’s Review, and Christianity Today along with chapters in several books. She is currently working on a book for InterVarsity Press on children’s spiritual formation.

Recent awards and honors include

  • Keynote speaker: Laytham Lecture in Early Childhood Ministry, Church of the Nazarene national TEACH conference, Cincinnati, Ohio, August 12 – 13, 2016.
  • Keynote speaker: Betenbough Home Lectures Keynote Speaker. Lubbock Christian University, Lubbock, TX, November 5 – 6, 2015.
  • Keynote speaker: Thirty-Fifth Annual William M. Green Distinguished Christian Scholar Lecture Program. Pepperdine University, Malibu, CA, Oct 6, 2014.
  • J. Vernon McGee Chair of Biblical Studies at John Brown University, 2012-2014
  • Distinguished Christian Service conferred by Pepperdine University, May 2, 2013
  • Best Books of 2012: Byron Borger named Intergenerational Christian Formation  “Best Serious Book about Congregational Life and Nurture”  
  • Kopio Award; a Christian Service Award conferred by Lipscomb University, July 3, 2010
  • Faculty of the Year award at John Brown in 2009

 Dr. Allen is married to Dr. Leonard Allen and they have three adult children, David, Daniel, and Bethany, as well as four grandchildren. She and her husband enjoy hiking, lifting weights, gardening, and cooking together.