Youth awarded for essays on living their Catholic faith


Catholic Daughters of the Americas in Anchorage presented awards to six young Catholics for winning submissions in this year’s youth essay competition.

Each year the Catholic Daughters holds the contest that focuses on an aspect of living out the Catholic faith. This year’s award winners wrote about ways they could serve God at summer camp through their Catholic faith. Winning essayists received free admission to a weeklong summer camp experience at St. Therese’s Camp in Wasilla.

The Catholic Daughters honored the winners during a June 13 meeting in Anchorage. They included: Daniel McConnell, Rosilia Hennemann, Gregory Biegel, Deirdre McMorrow, Isaac Davidson and Aodhan Nakada.

The number of winners was twice as many as last year. In addition to three awards sponsored by the Catholic Daughters, the Knights of Columbus at Holy Family Cathedral sponsored two awards and the Knights of Columbus at Our Lady of Guadalupe Co-Cathedral sponsored one award.

“What a blessing,” said coordinator Kerry Whitney. “It’s a joint effort to send as many kids to camp as possible — Knights of Columbus and Catholic Daughters of the Americas working together.”

Whitney said the judging committee was impressed by this year’s entries.

“Though many are excellent, we are limited due to our budget,” Whitney explained. “It was a tough call! Last night as the kids read their essay we saw no two were alike. All were unique with very different takes on serving God at camp.”

The essays focused on ideas such as attending in adoration, volunteering to clean the bathrooms, praying, befriending campers that seem lonely, helping fellow campers who are sick.

“Individually they covered just about everything we are called to do as Catholics,” Whitney said. “I was moved to tears with pride for those kids and so thankful to the families for teaching and living their faith with their children. Our church will be in good hands with these young hearts as our future leaders.”

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