The Robert Allen Memorial Lectures

In 1969 Mrs Doris V Allen, the widow of the Rev Dr Robert Allen who was Honorary Secretary of the Presbyterian Historical Society for many years made a donation to the Society to create “The Robert Allen Memorial Lecture”, an annual lecture dealing with some aspect of Irish Ecclesiastical History.

A Robert Allen Memorial Lecture has been delivered every year since except 1972, 1983 and 1986.

A Memorial Tribute to the late Rev Dr Robert Allen was paid by the Very Rev Dr J H Withers prior to the Inaugural Lecture held in Union Theological College on 19th March 1971. The text of the Tribute – “A Man of Proven Worth” – was published in the 1972 edition of the Bulletin of the Society.

The pamphlet “A Biographical Portrait of Rev Dr Robert Allen, 1904-1968, Irish Presbyterian Minister and Historian” by Rev Dr Joseph Thompson has been published by the Society.

Year Lecture Title Lecturer
1971 Presbyterianism in the Restoration Period Prof J C Beckett
1973 John Knox and his World” Prof E Gordon Rupp,
Cambridge University
1974 Rev Dr James Carlile and his Part in Irish National Education in the 19th century Dr R J Rodgers
1975 Dr William Drennan and the Politics of Presbytery Dr A T Q Stewart
1976 Ulster and the American Colonies Dr R J Dickson
1977 The Black Man and Inst: the Rev Dr Henry Cooke and RBAI Rev Prof R F G Holmes
1978 Rev J B Armour of Ballymoney: a reappraisal Mr J R B McMinn,
Stranmillis College
1979 Links between the Irish and English Presbyterian Churches since 1840 Prof R Buick Knox
1980 The Great Mr Boyse of Wood Street, Dublin, 1683-1728
(PHSI Pamphlet “The Great Mr Boyse” published)
Rev Dr A W G Brown
1981 Irish Presbyterianism and the Social Order 1920-1970 Principal J M Barkley
1982 The Religion of the People and the Problem of Politics: Methodists and Presbyterians in Britain and Ireland 1790-1850 Dr David Hempton
1984 Luther: Prophet to Christendom Rev Canon James Atkinson,
Sheffield University
1985 From Thomas Cartwright to John Howe: Some Puritans who came among us Very Rev Dr John T Carson
1987 Presbyterian Worship in Ulster prior to the Introduction of the Westminster Directory Rev Dr W D Bailie
1988 The Life and Times of the Rev Samuel Boyce, Minister of Ballyrashane Dr T H Mullin
1989 The Case of William Orr Rev John Brown
1990 Presbyterianism and Social Issues Rev Dr W E Davison
1991 Presbyterianism, Science and Darwinism Dr D N Livingstone
1992 Threats to Presbyterianism in Ireland in the 17th Century Prof David Stevenson
1993 Life After Death? – Ministry in the 19th Century Prof K Brown,
Dept of Economic and Social History, QUB
1994 Francis Hutcheson (1693-1746) and His Circle Prof M A Stewart,
Professor of the History of Philosophy, Lancaster University
1995 The Life and Work of the Rev Dr Robert Allen
(PHSI Pamphlet “Robert Allen” published)
Rev J Thompson
1996 Helen Waddell: Presbyterian Medievalist
(PHSI Pamphlet “Helen Waddell” published)
Prof R Norman C Vance
1997 Presbyterians and the Confessional State: the Sacramental Test as an issue in Irish Politics David Hayton,
Lecturer in Modern History, QUB
1998 1798 and the Modesty of History Dr A T Q Stewart,
formerly Reader in Irish History, QUB
1999 Irish Presbyterians in the 18th Century Prof Edith Mary Johnston Liik,
fformerly Professor of History at Macquarie University, Sydney, Australia and Hon Senior Research Fellow, QUB
2000 If Winter’s Here, can Spring be far behind, Has the Ecumenical Movement a Future? A Presbyterian Perspective
(PHSI Pamphlet “If Winter’s Here” published)
Very Rev Prof John Thompson,
formerly Professor of Systematic Theology and Apologetics at Union Theological College, Belfast
2001 Thomas Sinclair (1838-1914): A Presbyterian in Ulster Politics Dr Graham Walker,
Reader at the School of Politics, QUB
2002 Swift and the Irish Presbyterians Dr Ian McBride,
King’s College, London
2003 Henry Cooke: For and Against Very Rev Dr Finlay Holmes,
former Principal at Union Theological College
2004 Command and Teach These Things, the Idea and Implementation of Theological Education Prof Laurence Kirkpatrick,
Union Theological College
2005 Not Forgotten: President W D Killen’s Autobiography Dr Eull Dunlop
2006 Presbyterians and the Irish Language Rev Jim Stothers,
Greenisland Presbyterian Church
2007 Deaconesses in the Presbyterian Church in Ireland Dr Janice Holmes,
The Open University in Ireland
2008 The Minister and Mr de Valera: the Rev Dr J A H Irwin of Killead 1876-1954 Dr Eamon Phoenix,
Stranmillis University College
2009 The 1859 Revival: Causes, Course and Consequences Dr Andrew Holmes,
Queen’s University Belfast
2010 Conversion, Revival and Prophecy: Spiritual Experience in Seventeenth Century Presbyterian Ulster Dr Robert Armstrong,
Trinity College Dublin
2011 The Rev James Glasgow DD: Pioneer Missionary to India
(PHSI Pamphlet “Dr James Glasgow” published)
Rev Prof W P Addley
2012 Irish Presbyterians and the Christian Mind Prof John H Gillespie,
University of Ulster, Coleraine
2013 Cooke’s Lieutenant: The Rev Dr Robert Stewart of Broughshane
(PHSI Pamphlet “Rev Dr Robert Stewart – Cooke’s Lieutenant” published)
Very Rev Dr John Lockington
2014 Paupers, Presbyterians and the Poor Law in nineteenth century Ulster Dr Olwen Purdue,
Queen’s University Belfast
2015 Archibald Mcllroy (1859 – 1915) Very Rev Dr Donald Patton
2016 Putting Children First: From Presbyterian Orphan Society to Presbyterian Children’s Society, the Story of 150 Years Dr Paul Gray,
Presbyterian Children's Society
2017 Professor J E Davey and the Heresy Trial, 1927 Dr Andrew Holmes,
Queen's University Belfast
2018 The Shape of Ministry in the Early 18th Century Dr Robert Whan
2019 Angels have lost their Way Dr Leonne McCormick,
Ulster University Coleraine
(due to be given on 9 May 2019)