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Inspire Essay Contest

We’re looking for some fresh voices to share their gift of writing in our winter issue of Inspire, SPD’s quarterly magazine. We’d like to invite you to submit an essay on the topic of “A Thrill of Hope” for publication in our upcoming issue.


  • All submissions must be original work, written in English.

  • There are no age criteria—youth, adults, older adults are all welcome to enter.

  • 500-600 words (essays that do not meet the length requirement will not be accepted)

  • The theme for the essay is “A Thrill of Hope” which comes from a line in the popular Christmas song, O Holy Night. (“A thrill of hope, the weary world rejoices for yonder breaks a new and glorious morn…”). This issue will be published in early December, so essays may include references to the Christmas holiday or Advent season (though they do not have to.)

  • Essays should be grammatically sound and written for a Christian audience. Submissions will be evaluated by the Inspire editorial team who reserve the right to edit for length, clarity and grammar.

  • Submissions are due by Sept. 1, 2021. (No late submissions will be accepted.)

  • The top three essays will be published in our winter issue of Inspire and on the St. Philip the Deacon blog.

  • Please include author name, email address and phone number.

Please submit your essay or questions to Amanda Berger, managing editor at Those who submit essays will be notified by email by Sept, 15, 2021. All submissions become the property of St. Philip the Deacon and Inspire Magazine and may be used at their discretion.


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“Kindness is the only strength there is.”

Gregory Boyle