The Davies Unitarian Universalist Congregation is thrilled to announce that it has called Rev. Norman Allen as its settled minister. During the three years that Rev. Norm served as contract minister, membership at Davies doubled and the community passed some significant milestones. Two years ago, they made an important move toward inclusion by changing their name from “Church” to “Congregation.” Last year, they adopted the 8th Principle of Unitarian Universalism, making a lasting commitment to “accountably dismantle racism and other oppressions in ourselves and our institutions.” The unanimous vote to call Rev. Norm as their settled minister is another important milestone for a congregation that once considered closing its doors because membership and finances were dwindling.
Board President Lora Bennett commented, “Over the past few years, we have really worked hard as a community to decide what is important to us, and to do the hard work to make changes. We are truly embracing our youth and helping them grow in our tradition, we are working to make sure that we can be a home to everyone, and we called a minister – and what an amazing minister – who challenges us and helps us explore and grow each day.”
Rev. Norm received his M.Div. from Wesley Theological Seminary and was ordained by All Souls Church Unitarian in Washington, DC. He served his ministerial internship at Cedar Lane Unitarian Universalist Church in Bethesda, Maryland. Prior to embarking on the path to ministry, he enjoyed significant success as a playwright and essayist. His work for the theatre has been produced across the United States, Europe and Asia. His essays have appeared in media outlets ranging from the Washington Post and Baltimore Sun to literary magazines and websites such as OnBeing and Sojourners. He received a Masters of Liberal Arts from St. John’s College and headed the English department at Cesar Chavez Public Charter High School for Public Policy in Washington, DC.
Rev. Norm commented, “People often assume that ministry is a second career for me. Sometimes they even call it a ‘late career.’ But my goal has always been to draw people into a deeper experience of life, and to do that work in collaboration with others. Sometimes those efforts have been in the theatre, sometimes in print, sometimes in the classroom. I can’t imagine a better place to continue that lifelong endeavor than as minister to a vibrant, forward-looking community like Davies Unitarian Universalist Congregation.”