The Religious Liberty Council of the Baptist Joint Committee on its website announced the 5th annual Religious Liberty Essay Scholarship Contest, which is open to all high school students in the graduating classes of 2010 and 2011. According to the BJC, "this year's contest will commemorate the 50th anniversary of John F. Kennedy's landmark speech about the relationship between his religion and his politics and the separation of church and state."

The scholarship contest offers a grand prize of $1,000 and airfare and lodging for two to Washington, D.C. Second prize is $500, and third prize is $100.

Students enter the scholarship contest by writing an essay addressing the following topic:
The year 2010 marks the 50th anniversary of presidential nominee John F. Kennedy's speech to the Greater Houston Ministerial Association about the relationship between his religion and his politics. On September 12, 1960, the Roman Catholic politician spoke to the group of Protestant ministers about his religion and the way it would – and would not – affect his decisions as president. In an essay, discuss whether you think Kennedy was correct in advocating an absolute separation of church and state. Also, discuss the implications of his speech and how the principles he laid out are – or are not – followed by politicians and other leaders 50 years later.

For more information on the topic, contest rules, and a video of the speech visit: www.BJConline.org/contest

 

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