Cebu studes top National Bible Quiz
How long did King Solomon reign? How many psalms are there in the Old Testament and how many were composed by King David?
To help instill a love for the Bible among the youth, the Society of St. Paul on Saturday held the grand finals of the 4th St. Paul National Bible Quiz during the Manila International Book Fair at the SMX convention Center in Pasay City.
This year’s competition was also opened to colleges and universities who were asked to produce the best 10-minute short film carrying a biblical message.
“We believe that when the story of the Bible becomes part of their youth memory, it has an effect. It’s not just about time, places and dates. The values they get from the stories will be there,” said Fr. Dominador Guzman SSP, one of the organizers.
“So it is an alternative base for values education. It is not just about human education, there’s also a spiritual background,” he added.
Guzman said more than 200 high schools from across the country participated in this year’s national Bible quiz with 12 schools making it to the grand finals.
And after the final round yesterday, the champion that emerged was the team from the Sisters of Mary School Girlstown–Cebu. First runner-up was the Sisters of Mary School Girlstown–Cavite while St. Paul College of Bocaue was second runner-up.
In the short film competition, Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Maynila bagged the top five awards for its entries “Buklat,” “Lundayan,” “Bitaw,” “In Magno Silentio” and “Autumn.” “Lundayan” also won the Viewers Choice Award.
On the other hand, De La Salle-Lipa’s entry “Ere” received both the Special Jury Prize and the Audience Choice Award.
“We send posters out as early as June, when schools open, for them to organize their teams of three high students and one adviser (for the quiz),” Guzman said.
“You know what, it’s very surprising that in our regional finals, our problem was to find (questions for) tie breakers. The students are really good. They have a good batting average,” he said.
Guzman said the national quiz began in 2010 as part of the Catholic Church events to mark the 2,000th anniversary of St. Paul the Apostle.
“We started with several schools in Metro Manila. Because of the enthusiastic response, we continued this with PrimeTrade (Asia), the organizer of the Manila Book Fair, because they also wanted meaningful collateral events during the book fair,” he said.
“So we have been doing this with Prime Trade and other partner institutions,” he said, adding that the competition was open not just to Catholic high schools.
Guzman said biblical literacy has been increasing among Catholics, especially after the reforms implemented by the Second Vatican Council in the 1960s.
“There has been a great improvement. After the reforms of Vatican II, the Church became more open,” Guzman said.
“Many renewal movements—on marriage encounter, parish renewal and charismatic renewal—are based on Scripture. It is integrated into their formation programs,” he said.
In the short film competition for college students, Guzman said the organizers received 41 entries for the First AVFaith Awards.
“We asked them to produce a 10-minute short film that would have a story based on a biblical message. It was OK if the biblical text did not appear on screen as long as it was very obvious that its message was based on Scripture,” he said.
Guzman said the 41 entries were trimmed to 12 with the help of film director Mario de los Reyes and Movie and Television Review and Classification Board Chair Eugenio Villareal.
“Chairman Villareal was surprised with the entries. He said ‘these are our future filmmakers,’ when he saw the capabilities of the students,” Guzman said.
As for King Solomon, he reigned for 40 years and there are 150 psalms in the Old Testament, of which 73 were attributed to King David.
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