It’s not too late to enter Youth Department’s “You-Tube Challenge”

Youth Challenge

There is still time to enter the annual “You-Tube Challenge” issued by the Orthodox Church in America’s Department of Youth, Young Adult and Campus Ministry.  Deadline for registration is October 25, 2013.

The Challenge was initiated to help youth and young adults find their voice, and give them a place to share it. The world today, and even our Church has so much to say to our youth and young adults. However, as we all become more mature in our faith we find our own voice, our own ways of articulating what we know and believe. Additionally, we will provide you with helpful feedback and guidance so that your skills can be sharpened and honed to proclaim the Good News of Jesus Christ in your own life. Welcome to the 2013 OCA YouTube Challenge!

The Challenge

Youth and Young Adult (Ages 14-28) will respond with a video by midnight on November 15, 2013 to the following question:  “What is the Gospel?”  Participants may wish to reflect on:

  • The essential message of Jesus Christ
  • What his actions and words tell us about humanity and divinity
  • How the Gospel message can be preached in your particular environment (school, work, family, etc..)

Participants may wish to use their video to deliver a traditional speech, or find ways of more creatively answering the challenge through visual imagery and poetic license.

What you need to know…

  • While we encourage consultation with clergy and lay leaders (and can help facilitate it if need be) the submission must be the sole, creative work of the individual.
  • Submissions must be electronic, either by submitting a video file or a link to a YouTube video. If using YouTube, you must abide by their code of conduct and rules. We suggest you keep the video private and disable comments.
  • Submissions are due by November 15th at midnight and must be submitted via email to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).
  • Please indicate your desire to participate by October 20th by emailing (or having your parent/guardian email) Andrew Boyd, Youth Director, at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). He will contact you with more information and specifics.
  • Those under the age of 18 must secure parental permission to participate. Please email Andrew Boyd at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) for more details.
  • The highest scoring individual submission overall will be offered an all expenses paid trip to the National Festival of Young Preachers in January 2014, along with help, guidance, and coaching for that festival.
  • The second-highest and third-highest scores will be offered packages of books from Saint Vladimir’s Seminary Press.
  • Video submissions should be 6-10 minutes in length.
  • This challenge is open to all Orthodox Christians in North America.

Judging Criteria

I. Judging will be administered by a group of four clergy members:

  • Father Sergius Halvorsen PhD., Assistant Professor of Homelitics and Rhetoric at Saint Vladimir’s Seminary.
  • Father Timothy Hojnicki, Rector of Holy Apostles Mission in Mechanicsburg, PA.
  • Father Theophan Whitfield, Rector of Saint Nicholas Church in Salem, MA.
  • Deacon Jason Ketz, Deacon at Saint Mary’s Cathedral in Minneapolis, MN.

II.  Entries will be judged on the following criteria:

30 points for…

  • Doctrinal accuracy: accurate: the message is in accord with the teachings of the Orthodox Church.  This is a “thumbs-up” or “thumbs-down” category.
  • Christ-centered content: the message focuses on Jesus Christ and His teaching.

30 points for…

  • Engaging content: the message is interesting and coherent.

30 points for…

  • Inspiration:  the message is inspiring, uplifting and hopeful.

10 points for…

  • successful the speaker or speakers is/are in conveying a sense of their own joy and love for Jesus Christ and His Church.

Final scores will represent the average based on the score awarded by each judge.

Final scores and winners will be announced prior to December 10, 2013. Judges may also ask for permission to share certain videos on the “OCA Youth” Facebook page via our Department’s YouTube channel. Judging will be blind, that is, the identity of the groups or individuals submitting videos will not be known to the judges until after the scores are calculated.

Why Should YOU Participate?

That’s a good question! Here are several reasons:

  • You may want to answer this question for yourself so that when others ask you, you can provide an answer.
  • It provides a creative outlet! You may wish to answer with a prepared speech, but you can also answer with a creative video.
  • You will have an opportunity to practice public speaking, a necessary skill in almost any occupation or academic endeavor.
  • It will look good on your resume.
  • You will receive individualized feedback from experienced public speakers.

How Can YOU participate?

Simply email .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) for more details! Include “YouTube Challenge” in the subject line.