SPONSORED BY the Bank of Ireland, the contest for the best public speaker among sixth formers attending colleges in southern England has been won by 17-year-old Terence Kavanagh of St Michael's School, Stevenage.
Ten finalists competed at the Irish Centre, Camden Town, on 2 February at the contest organised by the Catenian Association.
Runner-up was Jessica Marley of Doury Martyrs School, Ickenham (subject: "What's wrong with being 10+ stone anyway?") and third was Paul Maddocks of St James High School, Edgware.
Terence spoke for four minutes to an appreciative audience on the "history of the bath". He traced its evolution from rudimentary Egyptian practices through sophisticated. Roman customs, Elizabethan
habits and on to modern esoteric Japanese rituals.
Chairman of the adjudicators was Lord Justice Lawton, who said he was impressed by the high standard of all the finalists.
Presented by the Bank of Ireland with a cheque for £30, Terence said he hopes to do so well in A levels that he can pursue his interest in public speaking by graduating in law and then becoming a barrister.
Declining vocations tackled head-on
MY THANKS to Sr M Bernadette OSSR. editor, for the current copy of Review for Contemplatives of All Traditions.
The editorial tackles head-on the problem of the majority of convents not getting vocations, and the fact that there are fewer and fewer convents.
Among the excellent articles are "The Sacraments" by Fr Ignatius De Pont, "The Consecrated Virgin Living in the World", by Sr Elizabeth Rees, "Jonah and the Vine", by M Basil Pennington OCSO, and "Enclosure", the Poor Clare Way, by Sr Francis Clare OSC. This talk was given at the OSB Free Association AGM at Ampleforth in April last year, and it is 10 pages of "the essential", straight to the heart of the matter, spiritual common sense, showing that the traditional hallmarks of enclosure are simplicity and ordinariness: The message is "to live Christ as closely as we can in whatever is our own particular tradition."
Do please read it.
Review For Contemplatives of All Traditions" is published by Sr M Bernadette, Redemptorist Convent, Chudleigh, Newton Abbot, S Devon TQI3 ODR. The annual subscription is only f2.50, but if you can afford more it would be a great help with production costs.