‘Each of Us Is a Masterpiece of God’s Creation!’
The Northern Cross
The Office of Marriage and Family Life for the Diocese of Duluth, funded by the United Catholic Appeal and the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops Home Mission, is proud to announce the winners of the second annual middle and high school respect life essay competition.
The contest strives to promote the ability of middle school students and high school students to articulate the need to respect life. The theme of this year’s competition was “Each of Us Is a Masterpiece of God’s Creation!” The contest was open to all fifth- through 12th-graders of the diocese.
Below are the winning essays.
God made us individual from each other because he called each of us to different missions in our lives. It is how we choose to respond to his call that plays a part in defining who we are. Pope
Francis tells us that “we must ask the Lord for the grace to see ourselves and others as he sees us.”
The sick and the old need love and care. If more people would take time out of their busy lives to visit, spend time and give the love and care to the elderly that they once gave to us, the world would be a better place. The elderly should not be made to feel lonely or forgotten.
The unborn need hope, faith and someone to fight for their lives. We can be that voice. Even though we are young we shouldn’t be afraid to support this cause by speaking out about this injustice. If we all fought for the unborn the world would be a better place. The unborn should never be forgotten.
The poor need support from those who have more. If every person gave to those in need the world would be a
better place. This would be done by volunteering and supporting local shelters and making donations to organizations. The poor should be treated with love and respect.
We are all masterpieces of God’s creation, made in his own image, destined to go to heaven, deserving of respect. We can answer God’s call by helping others, especially those in most need.
St. James Catholic School, Duluth
God created each of us unique, the way he wanted us to be. We each have a set destiny pathed before us. Our lives are a mystery but are precious and should be cherished. Each of us are masterpieces of God’s creation. Through this, we must honor God by taking care of what he gave us. We should live our lives with God as our most important priority. God has individually handcrafted who we are, so we should embrace the good in us! Our lives are masterpieces of God’s work, meaning you are not average or ordinary; you are a one-of-a-kind original!
Showing kindness and respect for all people, forgiving others, loving everyone, helping those in need and promoting peace are among some of the things we can do to live our lives as a masterpiece of God’s creation. Be sure to appreciate every beautiful thing, help to build something good to humanity that will endure even when you’re gone, and be a good influence, because whether you know it or not you are an influence to somebody. But most of all, love God and one another with a compassion of reason and heart.
Remember you are one of God’s valued treasures, hand-picked by him, for him. He created you exactly how he intended you to be. So stand tall and strong, with the confidence to speak your mind and make good decisions. God has a specific and notable purpose for your life. We must search for this purpose though. It isn’t always obvious. And that’s the beauty in life; you never know what’s around the corner. Life is a beautiful thing given to us by God.
I’m sure we all have heard the quote, “To the world you may be just one person, but to one person you may be the world.” If you can change someone’s life for the better, there has to be some value in yourself. We were all born with special talents and gifts. Sometimes, we don’t even know we have these talents until an event happens in our life, and our true identities are revealed. We are continually given opportunities to use our talents to help others in our daily interactions. Every single one of these moments is valuable beyond our realization. We might never know how even a small gesture can affect one’s life. We may not affect the entire world, but changing one life at a time is a step in the right direction.
You have more in you that you realize, and you can accomplish more than you ever thought possible. Respect the life you were given and the lives around you. God has created you and everyone physically and spiritually unique. If you use your talents to help others, our world may become a better place for all. Each of us is equally important, and we can learn from each others and combine our talents to do incredible things.
Proctor High School, Proctor
St. Rose Church, Proctor
St. James Catholic School, Duluth
St. James Catholic School, Duluth
Immaculate Conception Parish,
Pine City High School
If you are using the video, ask the first question before viewing.
1. Agree or disagree: It's okay to insult or make fun of people as long as they don't hear it.
2. What are some common signs of disrespect that you see in people here at school? How do you feel about that?
3. What do you dislike most about the way people treat each other here at school? What do you like the most? Why do you feel that way?
4. Are there a lot of put-downs here at school? Are put-downs a sign of disrespect? How, in what way?
5. Is there a difference between a put-down and an insult? What's the difference?
6. Do you have to like a person in order to be respectful, or can you be respectful to someone even if you don't particularly care for him or her?
7. When you're with a group of kids, what things might other people do or say that make you feel good? What things make you feel bad?
8. Do you think there is racism here at school? How is it expressed? How does that make you feel?
9. Have you, personally, ever experienced racism or some other type of prejudice? What happened? How did it make you feel?
10. Do the kids in your school tend to stay within their own racial and ethnic groups, or do they mix. Why do you think that happens here?
11. Several of the kids in the video commented that they feel pressure to stay with their own kind rather than mixing. Do you find the same pressures here at your school?
12. Do you think people are afraid of differences sometimes? Can you give some examples? Why do you think that's true?
13. Is it harder to respect someone who is very different from us? Why?
14. What are the benefits of having friends who are different from us?
15. Have you ever learned something new about a different culture from a friend?
16. How well do you kids know each other? What things stand in the way of getting to know people better?
17. What responsibilities do you feel you have toward your classmates?
18. Is it ever okay to treat another person with disrespect?
19. What are the benefits of treating people with respect?
20. The kids in this video said they think everybody is entitled to be treated with respect. Do you agree?
21. What was most meaningful to you in this video?
22. Did anybody in this video say anything you disagree with? What would you say to that person?