Yvie wins Speak for Faith Competition with compelling speech

22 August 2023

John XXIII College Year 12 student Yvie Rigg has won the 2023 Speak for Faith Competition. The competition, held at the Catholic Education Office in Leederville,, saw entrants deliver a 5-minute speech, followed by two minutes of impromptu questions based on their Religious Education knowledge.

Fifteen contestants from nine schools took part including: Mary Carter (Year 12, St Norbert College); Declan Kartadinata (Year 11, Corpus Christ College); Yvie Rigg (Year 12, John XXIII College); Elizabeth Rumble (Year 11, Seton Catholic College); and Wesley West (Year 11, Ursula Frayne Catholic College).

Inspired by Pope Francis’ call to be ‘Pilgrims of Hope,’ Yvie spoke about the developing role of women in the Catholic Church.

The final question posed to participants was “Name one significant moral issue facing Australia at the present time and provide arguments about what should be done to deal with this issue.”

Yvie said, ‘I wanted to discuss this topic because I believe the historical gender inequity in many

institutions (including the Church) has denied women full participation in important decisions that impact them.’

‘This topic is particularly relevant to Catholics today as both the Plenary Council and the Bishop’s Synod are actively considering the role of women in the Church, and it caught my eye because I am passionate about women’s rights and thought it was something that the audience might find interesting too. I mentioned in my speech that critically considering new ways that women can be involved will make the Church stronger and more resilient.’

Yvie thanked her teacher, Ms Turner and her parents for their unwavering support in preparing for the competition.

She said that despite her previous involvement in other public speaking and debating competitions the Speak for Faith competition had attracted some of the ‘highest calibre of speakers’ she had competed against.

‘I was amazed by the amount of preparation and the eloquence of the speakers, and there was a great, supportive spirit in the room. I would encourage anyone considering entering this competition to step forward because it has taught me some great skills and allowed me to meet some awesome people,’ Yvie added.

Corpus Christi student, Declan finished second whilst Seton’s Elizabeth finished third. Each received a medallion and a cheque from the sponsor, The Catenian Association of WA.

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