The Rev. Kelly Allen, pastor of University Presbyterian Church in San Antonio, has been endorsed by Mission Presbytery to stand for moderator of the upcoming 221st General Assembly, June 14-21 in Detroit.
Allen is the third moderatorial candidate, joining Ruling Elder Heath Rada of Western North Carolina Presbytery and the Rev. John Wilkinson of Genessee Valley Presbytery in New York.
Allen has served the 300-member University Presbyterian Church since 2009. She has also served churches in Missouri and in Buckinghamshire, England since her ordination in 1992. She is a graduate of Washington University in St. Louis and Columbia Theological Seminary. She also holds a degree from the University of Birmingham in England.
She holds degrees from Washington University in St. Louis, Columbia Theological Seminary in Decatur, Ga., and the University of Birmingham in England. She also served as adjunct faculty instructor at Eden Theological Seminary from 2003-2007. Allen and her spouse, John Rezentes, have two children.
In a statement on her web site, Allen wrote, “Through 22 years of pastoral ministry I have found profound joy in sharing leadership and ministry with congregations I have been privileged to serve. I want to share this experience far and wide. Though I am well aware of the polarization and declining membership within the denomination, I am not despondent about the future. I believe a strong witness to the transforming power of the Holy Spirit can give us a witness beyond our numbers.”
Allen listed three leadership commitments she deems necessary for a GA moderator: a commitment to spiritual practices, a desire to build community among strangers and a willingness to be bold and bodily witnesses to Gospel values.
“I believe when these are in balance, there is vibrant humanity at an individual level, and vibrant life at a congregational and denominational level,” Allen wrote. “These three emphases offer the invitation to think, not in terms of the polarities of social justice/evangelism, liberal/conservative, centralized/decentralized, but integrate the best of all of these perspectives, while looking at the fruit of our words and deeds in the world.”