2015 St. John Chrysostom Oratorical Festival - Parish Level - Summary


Date: March 15, 2015

Time: 9:00 AM - 1:00 PM

Place: Started and finished in Social Hall

Total No. of Speakers: 18 + younger students in Grades 5&6

Results: Please see below. All students received Honorable Mention.

Congratulations to all students who participated in our parish Oratorical Festival and delivered speeches!

They are all winners!


[Students with "Honorable Mention" are listed in alphabetical order.]

7th-9th Grade: 11 students delivered speeches:

  • Finalist: Sam Radwanski

  • (will represent St. Nicholas at the District level)

  • Runner-up: Sophia Gibson

  • Runner-up: Stephanie Cotitsas

  • Honorable Mention: Leah Abdallah

  • Honorable Mention: Alexandra Chalogianis

  • Honorable Mention: Marina Govatsos

  • Honorable Mention: Christopher Hays

  • Honorable Mention: George Hauck

  • Honorable Mention: Gabriel Necula

  • Honorable Mention: Anastasia Papageorgiou

  • Honorable Mention: Chrysanthe Patselas


  1. The theme of the 2014 Clergy-Laity Congress was “The Orthodox Christian family: A dwelling of Christ and a witness of His Gospel.” Discuss how today’s Orthodox Christian families can strive to live according to this ideal.

  2. St. Paul writes, “An athlete is not crowned unless he competes according to the rules” (2 Timothy 2:5). Discuss the virtue of honesty in a time when cheating in school, sports, and other activities is reported more and more.

  3. Discuss the Orthodox Christian practice of fasting from certain foods and the spiritual discipline it teaches, especially in light of the Lord’s directive in Matthew 6:16–18.

  4. Malala Yousafzai is an inspirational example of fighting fearlessly for a noble cause in spite of threats against her life. Discuss a young saint or person from the Bible who illustrates such courage.

  5. Several leaders in the political and religious arena have been described as people with a prophetic gift. What really is a prophet? Discuss their actions in light of the Old Testament prophets and in comparison to other contemporary examples.


[Students with "Honorable Mention" are listed in alphabetical order.]

10th-12th Grades: 7 students delivered speeches:

  • Finalist: Angelos Bairactaris

  • (will represent St. Nicholas at the District level)

  • Runner-up: Anastasia Gibson

  • Runner-up: Athina Res

  • Honorable Mention: Frank Bairactaris

  • Honorable Mention: John Hauck

  • Honorable Mention: Nicholas Hays

  • Honorable Mention: William Kiningham


  1. The Lord said, “I was in prison and you came to me” (Matthew 25:36). What does this teach us about our attitudes toward those in jails and imprisoned?

  2. Psalm 50 (51) begins, “Have mercy on me, O Lord…” It is considered the psalm of repentance. Discuss how praying this psalm might affect our understanding of repentance, confession, and forgiveness.

  3. Women apostles, martyrs, and saints have spread the Gospel and advanced the Church from the beginning of Christianity. Discuss the significance of their roles and examples for all Christians today.

  4. The St. Nicholas Church at Ground Zero, which was destroyed on September 11, 2001, is soon to be rebuilt. Discuss the ways in which this tiny church building will now become a symbol of the universal themes of victory over evil; healing and hope; and being a beacon of Orthodox Christianity.

  5. Using the parable of the poor widow's offering to the Temple (Luke 21:1–4), discuss the Orthodox Christian attitude of offering to the Church’s ministries.