Born: No­vem­ber 19, 1854, St. Lou­is, Mis­sou­ri.

Died: Jan­ua­ry 28, 1930, Ne­wark, New Jer­sey.

Buried: Ev­er­green Ce­me­te­ry, New­ark, New Jer­sey. There is al­so a me­mo­ri­al to him in New­ark’s Mount Plea­sant Ce­me­te­ry.


Lyman was the son of George Otis All­en and Ju­lia Olds Whit­ney, and hus­band of My­ra Ir­win (mar­ried Sep­tem­ber 4, 1880, Mon­roe, Io­wa). Some hym­nals in­cor­rect­ly give his first ini­tial as ‘S’.

He gra­du­at­ed from Wash­ing­ton Uni­ver­si­ty, St. Lou­is (BA & MA). He con­duct­ed post­gra­du­ate stu­dies in phi­lo­so­phy at Prince­ton Uni­ver­si­ty, and at­tend­ed Prince­ton Theo­lo­gic­al Se­mi­na­ry. The Uni­ver­si­ty of Woos­ter lat­er award­ed him a Doc­tor of Di­vi­ni­ty de­gree.

The Pres­by­tery of St. Lou­is or­dained Al­len in 1882, and he served se­ver­al years as pas­tor of the Ca­ron­de­let Pres­by­ter­ian Church.

In 1889, he moved to the South Park Pres­by­ter­ian Church in New­ark, New Jer­sey, serv­ing there 27 years.

In October 1916, he re­signed to work full time in the li­ter­ary field. At one time, he was on the Pres­by­ter­ian Board of Home Mis­sions in New York.



My Father

O God of rest!
Thy watchful care has safely kept
My soul from evil while I slept;
Thy guardian love has been my shade;
Thy healing touch has strength con­veyed;
In mystic sleep destroyed Thou hast
The disenchantments of the past;
In life renewed, in frame reborn,
I wake and praise Thee with the morn,
O God of rest,
My Father!

O God of dreams!
By night Thou hast revealed to me
Chambers of precious imagery;
The fresher air, the farther lights,
My native world upon the heights,
Dear faces of the earlier time,
Loved voices with the olden rime.
I view my hope mount from eclipse,
I hail my heart’s apocalypse,
O God of dreams,
My Father!

O God of light!
When morning’s beams my slumbers break
I feel Thy presence as I wake;
About me floats an atmosphere
All crystalline, most pure and clear,
Charged with Thy tender Fatherhood,
Through which I sense th’Eternal Good
In pulsings of high purpose beat;
And all my soul lies at Thy feet,
O God of light,
My Father!

O God of life!
From sleep and dreams I turn, I spring,
To greet my being’s Sire and King.
Refreshed and strong I now present
Myself a humble instrument
By which Thy covenant may pursue
Its course of love the whole day through.
Accept me, let the joy be mine,
Of service ’neath Thy yoke divine,
O God of life,
My Father!

O God of love!
What blessed guerdons Thou dost give!
The grace to grow more sensitive
To every rhythm; the subtle power
To see the far-off full-blown flower
Of every seed; the ecstasy
Of secret comradeship with Thee;
The glory, only faith may win,
Of working out what Hea­ven works in;
O God of love,
My Father!

Lyman Whitney Allen
A Parable of the Rose, 1908