Short History of Allen Chapel A.M.E. Lay Organization
The Lay Organization of Allen Garfield A.M.E. Church was reactivated on April 27, 1987, under the leadership of Clara B. Neal, after accepting the appointment as Lay Organization President by Pastor Leon G. Lipscombe. The first slate of elected Lay Organization officers were Margarita Stephens, Vice President and Histographer; Ms. Constance Martin, Secretary; Mrs. Yvonne Flowers-Brown, Treasurer; and Ms. Gail Reed, Director of Lay Activities. The initial membership consisted of a faithful and dedicated nineteen members.
Initial meetings focused on the purpose and goals of the Lay Organization, while staying aware that Allen Chapel wanted to play a major role in the participation of Lay activities within The Washington Lay Organization. Mrs. Bernice Mungen, President, and, Ms. Annette Jones, Activity Chairperson both spent countless hours sharing a wealth of information to the Lay members of Allen Chapel on how to organize, conduct and implement organizational activities. Rev. Lipscombe gave his blessing and direction leading to each member diligently studying The Lay Handbook and other literature related to the structure of the AME Church and the teachings of Richard Allen.
In addition to our monthly meetings which focused on planning, productivity, and reviewing information about the A.M.E. Church and the responsibility of Lay Organization to Allen members and the Washington Lay Organization.
The first year, the Allen Chapel Lay Organization planned and participated in the following activities:
• Created a Member’s handbook for the Allen Chapel congregation
• Formation of a Church newsletter
• Sponsored a float in the “Groundbreaking Parade”
• Hosted the January 1988 meeting of the Washington conference Lay Organization
• Sponsored a bus trip to New York to see the play “FENCES” starring Billy Dee Williams
• Participated in in the Annual Conference at Turner Memorial A.M.E.
• Participated in the observance of Allen’s Day on April 24 1988