Coptic Orthodox Diocese of the Southern United States

Southern Coptic Diocese "Youth for Christ" 2011 Award

December 17, 2010

COLLEYVILLE, TX. December 17, 2010 -- Southern Coptic Diocese "Youth for Christ" 2011 Award

The Youth for Christ Award is an annual scholarship and essay contest for High School Youth. We invite young people from the Southern US Coptic Diocese this year to write an original essay on the topic "Cyber-space in the life of the Coptic Youth: A highway to Heaven or Hell"

In this age, youth spend a large portion of their life in Cyber-space performing school work, social interaction, tweeting, and sometimes living in virtual reality. This way of living may lead to a very close relation with God, or as far as possible from God. The youth discernment, self-control, and Will are called upon to choose their actions every step of the way. This contest addresses the means by which the Coptic Youth decidedly chooses his/her approach to make the cyber-space a highway to eternity and Heaven.

  • The first winner(s) will have his or her paper published on the Diocese website.
  • The first place winner (s) will be also attending the Diocese Youth Convention completely free. Note: Certificate must be submitted with registration.
  • The second place winner(s) will be also attending the convention at one third the cost; the third place, at one half the cost.
  • Each contestant will receive a certificate signed by HG Bishop Youssef that he/she successfully participated in the contest.
  • Each Church is encouraged to support her youth in how to think through and address the topic.
  • Each Church is encouraged to hold a ceremony for all of the church contestants and give additional awards of the priest choice


  • January 31, 2011: Outlines and Sunday School teacher note due. Sunday School teacher recommendation should attest to student's age and character.
  • March 25, 2011: Final Papers due.
  • May 25, 2011: Winners Announced.

Submission Guidelines:
Paper should be 4-5 pages, double spaced, 11pt font. Papers should cover the following areas in responding to the topic:

Biblical Wisdom (Quotes from Old and New Testament on the proper and improper view of science and new discoveries)20 pts
Patristic Wisdom (Applicable Quotes from the Sayings of the Church Fathers)15 pts
Comprehensiveness (Covers all facets of the topic: God's command, personal discernment, our will to choose, consequences of our actions, inner struggle, creating one's own environment, confession, support, etc…)15 pts
Practical Application (Addressing how one actually uses cyber space for a successful and spiritual life & environment)20 pts
Illustrates empowered, fulfilled living (At peace with self and others, Joyful and balanced living...)20 pts
Conforms to Language Arts standards10 pts

To Participate:

Review Process and Awards:

  • Papers will be first peer reviewed, then the top 10% will be reviewed by a board.
    • Each Contestant will submit his/her paper by the deadline.
    • Names on actual papers will be stripped away (to preserve anonymity) and each anonymous paper will be emailed back to 4 other peers to score it according to the criteria listed above.
    • Peers will give a score based on the criteria listed above, with a final mark out of 100.
    • Peers will email the scores for each of the 4 anonymous papers to the Diocese.
    • The diocese will average the scores received from each reviewing peer so that each paper will get a final peer review mark that is the average of the 4 marks given by his/her peers
    • The top 10% of all papers will be identified, and will be reviewed by an actual board of reviewers to determine the best paper.
  • Winning paper(s) will be published on the diocese website.
  • Funds from registration plus a $1000 will be used to support the education fund of a sister/brother of Christ.
  • Ceremony for Award will be made in the winning contestant's church.
  • Top winner will attend the annual winter youth retreat completely free.

This contest is only open to High School Youth.