Catholic Citizenship Essay Contest

Catholic Citizenship Essay Contest

Catholic Citizenship Essay Contest

A Higher Purpose
Encourage youth in your community to become citizens grounded in their faith through creative writing. Open to all Catholic students (public, private, home, or parochial schools) in grades 8 to 12 during the current school year.

This contest encourages today’s youth to be more connected to their community and their faith. The goal of this program is to involve young Catholics in 8th through 12th grade (public, private, parochial or home schools) in civic discourse and instill in them religious and life-affirming values. The essay should be approximately 500-750 words on a specific subject, changing every other year. Entrants will be judged on grammar, style, and how clearly they present the theme – which should showcase creativity, imagination and overall development of the topic.

Action Steps

  1. Order the Catholic Citizenship Essay Kit (#EA-KIT) through Supplies Online, the supply ordering portal available on Officers Online.
  2. Use the sample press release as a model to create and distribute a tailored release to local media.
  3. Build public interest for the event! Promote the Catholic Citizenship Essay in your parish and larger community through a variety of efforts:
    • Advertise at Catholic Youth Organization (CYO) meetings, in parish halls, and especially in local Catholic schools. Prominently display promotional posters (found in the Catholic Citizenship Essay Kit (#EA-KIT)).
    • Reach out and encourage Catholic School English teachers to use this as a class assignment.
    • Bulletin announcements
    • Pulpit announcements
    • Posting on your council and parish website / social media pages
  4. Ensure that all essays are collected by the pre-determined date.
  5. Assemble a team of three or more judges (consisting of clergy, teachers, and other respected members of the Catholic community) to select winning submissions.
  6. Make a formal presentation of winners and invite the media to attend! On the day of the presentation, be sure to wear Knights of Columbus-branded apparel and enlist a fellow Knight or community member to photograph the event.
  7. Send winning essays to the next highest level for judging. Contact your district deputy to learn where the winning essays should be mailed. If there are no higher levels in your area or jurisdiction, send the essays to the Supreme Office Department of Fraternal Mission for the final round of judging.
  8. Following the Catholic Citizenship Essay Contest, update the community on the success of your program by amending the Catholic Citizenship Essay sample announcement and distributing it to local media, along with energizing photographs from the event.
  9. To gain credit for your program, complete the associated reporting forms and submit them to the Supreme Council Department of Fraternal Mission. Remember to retain copies for your council records.


2019-2020 Catholic Citizenship Essay Contest Theme:

Discuss the meaning of Virtue and how you live and embody the virtue of Charity.

“Charity is the theological virtue which we love God above all things for his own sake, and our neighbor as ourselves for the love of God” - Catechism of the Catholic Church, 1822

Biblically, virtue is understood as the conformity of life and conduct with the principles of morality, while Charity signifies the reciprocal love between God and man, one that is manifest in unselfish love and eloquently shown in the life, teachings, and death of Jesus Christ. “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. And a second is like it, you shall love your neighbor as yourself” (Matthew 22:37-39).

In an essay of 500-750 words, consider the meaning of virtue and think about ways in which you exemplify the virtue of Charity to glorify and reflect the nature of God. This could be at home with your families or in your communities, as you enrich the welfare of others.


Catholic Citizenship Essay Contest Resources

All supplies and kits should be ordered by your council Grand Knight or Financial Secretary using the Supplies Online application available through Officers Online. Please note that Guide Sheets, Press Releases, etc. are available below as PDFs.

  1. #4202-EA- Essay Contest - Guidebook
  2. #4208- Essay Contest - Entry Form
  3. #4216- Essay Contest - Participation Form
  4. #4209- Essay Contest - Vertical Poster
  5. #4206- Essay Contest - Participant Certificate
  6. #4207- Essay Contest - Winners Certificate
  7. #10643- Essay Contest - Press Release
  8. #10644- Essay Contest - Winners Announcement
  9. #10614- Essay Contest - Guide Sheet

Kit Contents
Order the Catholic Citizenship Essay Kit (#EA-Kit) through Supplies Online, the supply ordering portal available on Officers Online.

  • #4202- Guidebook
  • #4208- Entry Form
  • #4216- Participation Form
  • #4209- Vertical Poster
  • #4206- Participant Certificate
  • #4207- Winners Certificate