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The New Gracanica Midwestern Diocesan Canonization Weekend Writing
Competition and Oratorical Festival

This summer, July 14-16 is dedicated to the Pan Orthodox Glorification
of St. Mardarije of St. Sava Monastery in Libertyville and All-America.
St. Mardarije was the first bishop of St. Sava Monastery and its

In honor of St. Mardarije and his canonization to saint, New Gracanica
Midwestern Diocese is hosting a very special event in the history of the
Diocese – The Glorification of St. Mardarije Honoring 100 years from
the day Bishop Mardarije came to be the first Serbian Bishop in America.
We expect thousands of people will witness, participate and attend
events over this historic and memorable weekend.

As a part of this great historic celebration, we will have an event
specifically for high school and college students of the Serbian
Orthodox Midwestern Diocese. This competition is for those who would
like to learn more about Saint Mardarije, who is so near and dear to us
for his role as builder of St. Sava Monastery and the first bishop for
Serbians in America. His body has been exhumed as the first part of the
process to prepare for this great weekend. His body had shown to be
incorrupt, when the grave was recently reopened and uncovered, even
though he was buried nearly 90 years ago – This is a miracle of God.

The Youth Department of New Gracanica Midwestern Diocese is organizing a
story-writing competition for the high school students, and a
competitive essay-writing Oratorical Festival for college students.

Both the college students and the high school students will receive a
digital electronic book in PDF format about the life of Saint Mardarije.
High school students are asked to submit an original story (10-15
minutes in length when read) written for elementary through middle
school aged children. College students are asked to submit an essay (7
to 10 minutes in length) on one aspect of the St. Mardarije’s life, such
as his life as bishop or his years as builder of the monastery or an
Orthodox Christian as bishop in the New World.

A main component of the story and essay writing is that high school and
college students work with the regular supervision of the student’s
parish priest for advice, guidance, and understanding of the materials
provided about the Life of Bishop Mardarije.

All students submitting writing for this competition will need to be at
the event. The writings need to be in English – will be judged by
American Orthodox Christians. Seven college students’ essays will be
selected prior to the event but announced at the event, for oral reading
at one of the Canonization weekend events. Three scholarships awarded
for the college student essay competition.

Three original children’s stories from the high school writing
competition will be chosen prior to the event but announced at the
event, and read by a story teller at one of the Canonization weekend
events. One of the competition’s original children’s stories will be
chosen to be printed into a realchildren’s book. The top three high
school writers’ stories will also receive financial scholarships.

All participants present will receive a special honorable mention award
to note and remember their participation in this historic competition
and Canonization weekend.

All contest entrants must register to enter by May 21. The college
essays and the high school children’s stories need to be turned in by
midnight, July 10th.

Essays and children’s stories can be submitted in written format by
mailing them to:

Youth Department

7855 Marsh Rd.

Indianapolis, IN 46278.

Essay and story submissions must arrive by midnight, July 10th.

Stories and essays can be submitted via email by sending them to:

Essay and story submissions must arrive by midnight, July 10th.

To register your participation:

Send an email to:

Stating the following information:

Name –

Address –

Phone Numbers –

Cell –


Email Address –

Age –

Parish name –

Parish priest’s name –

Grade or year in college you will be entering in fall of 2017 –

Entry Category: High School Children’s story or College Essay

All email registrations stating your participation in the Canonization
Writing Competition must arrive by midnight May 24.


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