Youth Ministry of Trinity Lutheran Church

Charles Cook Sr., while a faithful member of Trinity Lutheran Church for over 60 years, was celebrated for his masterful, distinguished gift of oratorical recitations that inspired hope, love, and joy. When God created the Earth, God spoke it into creation. God's words have power.

As we are made in the image of God, our words have power too. Trinity Lutheran Church is honored to sponsor this contest in memory of our beloved Charles Cook Sr. We hope to provide an opportunity for students to share the power of delivering inspirational poems and speeches.

This year's contest will be held on Saturday, June 5, 2021 at Trinity Lutheran Church beginning at 2:00 PM. Applications are due by May 1, 2021. Please either download, print and mail us the form or enter online and submit the form.

  1. The contest is open to students in Grades 6-12.

  2. Contestants are expected to compete in one of the divisions:
    Junior / 6-8 Grades with time limit of 2-5 minutes
    Senior / 9-12 Grades with time limit of 3-5 minutes

  3. Time begins when contestants begin speaking. Time includes introduction.

  4. 1 Point deduction will be taken for every 30 seconds or fraction of time over the time limit.

  5. During the contest, the contestant may request a 30 second timeout for a penalty of 2.5 points to regain composure or recover part of his/her/their speech.

  6. In the event that a contestant may forget part of his/her/their speech, the contestant has up to the maximum time limit of each category to recall the speech. After this time the contestant will be judged on the performance as given.

  7. Contestants should memorize and deliver an inspirational speech or poem.

  8. The use of props and costumes is permitted. Students are permitted to dress up in costume appropriate to the time period or the role. Students are also allowed the limited use of props in their presentation. However, this is a speech competition. The emphasis of the contest is on the delivery, accuracy and emotional appeal to the audience.

  9. A contestant who reads their speech from note cards, paper, etc... will be disqualified.

  10. Contestants, parents and chaperones are expected to be respectful of other contestants and conduct themselves professionally. Any contestant or chaperone that willfully or maiciously harasses, intimates, and/or disrespects fellow contestants, chaperons, or contest officials will be disqualified. Contestants will be disqualified from contest if their parents, guardians, teachers, guests, or chaperones violate this stipulation.

  11. Contestants' supporters may videotape competition. Personal videos may not be used to dispute or challenge judges' rulings.

  12. All judges' rulings are final.

  1. Maskes are required for all attending.

  2. Only up to two chaperones/spectators allowed per contestant. This is strictly enforced.

  3. Body temperature checks will be conducted at the door. Anypne with a fever will not be allowed to attend.

  4. Any person including contestants showing any signs of illness or COVID symptoms should not attend.

  5. Any person including contestants who is quarantined should not attend.

Trinity Lutheran Church appreciates your cooperation in following these guidelines!

Trinity Lutheran Church will live stream the Charles Cook Sr., Annual Oratorial Contest. To view the live stream, please visit our home page at and click the Live Stream banner for the contest.

The Yvette Bolden Scholarship Fund was started in the early 1970s. It was funded by Yvette’s parents Lula and Edward Bolden in memory of Yvette who passed away at an early age. Each year on the 2nd Sunday in June, Trinity Lutheran Church celebrates Education Sunday. During the program students who attend Trinity are recognized. Those who are graduating and going on to college or continuing their college education receive a book scholarship. The students are all acknowledged for their talents, academic achievements, participation in Sunday School and church activities.


The funds for Education Sunday are donations received from the All Saints’ Memorial Booklets and other donations received during the year in memory or in honor of loved ones. Following the presentations, a reception is held in honor of the students. The members of Trinity continue to encourage and support their youth as they grow in God's grace and become leaders in their church, school and community.

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