2015 Catholic Young Writer Award

WAS HE A LIAR, OR MAD? OR WAS HE TELLING THE TRUTH?

 Today it is fashionable to assume that Jesus Christ was “simply a good person” who campaigned about helping the poor and sick. But is that really who he was?

 “I am trying here to prevent anyone from saying the really foolish thing that people often say about Him: ‘I’m ready to accept Jesus as a great moral teacher, but I don’t accept his claim to be God.’ That is the one thing we must not say. A man who was merely a man and said the sort of things Jesus said would not be a great moral teacher. He would either be a lunatic—on a level with a man who says he is a poached egg—or else he would be the Devil of hell. You must make your choice. Either this man was, and is, the Son of God, or else a madman or something worse. You can shut him up for fool, you can spit at him and kill him as a demon; or you can fall at his feet and call him Lord and God. But let us not come up with any patronizing nonsense about his being a great human teacher. He has not left that option open to us. He did not intend to.”

– C.S. Lewis

 This is the essential question. Who was Jesus Christ?

 In the 2015 Catholic Young Writer Award, we invite you to ponder this question, using as a starting-point the words of the writer C.S. Lewis, above.

The Catholic Young Writer Award is a prestigious Award launched by the Catholic Writers’ Guild and now run annually by the Catholic Union Charitable Trust (CUCT –Registered Charity No 1137317).  The Award includes a shield, to be kept for one year, plus a cash prize of £100, and book prizes.

A number of runner-up prizes are also awarded. The Award is open to all young Roman Catholics in Britain aged 11-18, and all pupils at Roman Catholic secondary schools in Britain.

 HOW TO ENTER

In your essay you should answer the question posed above about Jesus Christ, with specific reference to the quoted paragraph by C.S. Lewis.  You should show evidence of having studied some relevant Scripture passages (eg  Luke 7:19, John 1:14-18,  Acts 8:37), and the Catechism of the Catholic Church. (sections 422-455).

Your essay can be handwritten or produced on a computer, and it can be illustrated, although elaborate artwork or collage is NOT recommended.

To the teacher:

This annual Award has proved popular with Catholic schools, and is designed to fit in with the RE syllabus.  We encourage whole classes to take part. Entries should be collected together and sent as a group: each must carry the student’s FULL NAME, DATE OF BIRTH and the FULL NAME AND POSTAL ADDRESS OF THE SCHOOL.

Entries should be sent to: Catholic Young writer Award 2015, The Catholic Union Charitable Trust, St Maximilian Kolbe House, 63 Jeddo Road London W12 9EE to arrive not later than June 30th 2015.  All entries will be read during the summer and the winner and runners-up notified during the Autumn Term 2015.

The Catholic Union Charitable Trust usually arranges a formal presentation of the prizes at school (eg at morning assembly or similar) by a member. Prizes can also be sent by post.

RULES

  1. Entries can be handwritten or produced on a computer, must be the student’s own unaided work, and should not be more than 4 A4 pages in length. We are unable to accept entries by email.
  2. Entries will become the property of the Catholic Union of Great Britain. The winning essay may be published on the website of both or either of these groups, with the author’s permission.
  3. The judges’ decision is final and no correspondence can be entered into.
  4. Spelling, punctuation, and good English are important: the judges are also looking for a real understanding of the subject, and evidence of some serious thought and reflection.

 CATHOLIC UNION CHARITABLE TRUST

St Maximillian Kolbe House, 63 Jeddo Road London W12 9EE

www.cuct.org

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