Rev. Charles H. Allen, SJ, was born on February 13, 1942, in Jamaica Plain, MA, where he attended St. Thomas High School. He entered the Society of Jesus at Shadowbrook in Lenox, MA, on August 14, 1959. He received his B.A. in Philosophy from Boston College and a master’s in philosophy from Weston College in Weston, MA. He also earned a master’s in mathematics from Brown University, a Bachelor of Sacred Theology from the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome, and later went on to receive a master’s in educational administration from Columbia University in NY. He was ordained a priest on September 8, 1973, at the College of the Holy Cross in Worcester, MA.
Following ordination, Fr. Allen spent a year teaching math at Boston College, followed by a year teaching math and religion at Cranwell Prep in Lenox, MA. He then taught math for two years at Xavier High School in Manhattan while pursuing a master’s at Columbia University. In 1977, he became assistant principal and religion teacher at Fairfield Prep, where he served for five years before moving to Boston College High School also as assistant principal for two years. In 1985, he returned to Fairfield Prep, this time as principal for four years.
Fr. Allen moved back to Boston College in 1989 to serve as an assistant in the admissions office. In 1994, he began what would be his final and longest assignment as university chaplain and assistant to the president at Fairfield University. He was there for 26 years. In addition, he also served as a spiritual mentor and friend to a host of non-profit and civic organizations throughout the Bridgeport and Fairfield area, notably in his role as chaplain to Fairfield’s police and fire departments.
In 2020, at the height of the pandemic, Fr. Allen bid farewell to Fairfield during a parade of vehicles a mile long—students, faculty, alumni, and community members, all waiting to pass by and wave goodbye to their beloved Jesuit.
Fr. Allen died peacefully on January 10, 2024, just shy of his 82nd birthday.