Stump Preaching Competition

Stump Preaching Competition

The Stump Preaching event at National Rendezvous will follow the same criteria as used by the National Youth Ministries for the Fine Arts Festival “Short Sermon” competition as defined in the 2017 Fine Arts Festival Rulebook and Evaluation Criteria. (See for details.)


  1. An entry in Short Sermon (Stump Preaching) is the art of verbally communicating a biblical message that includes Scripture quotations or readings presented by one eligible student.
  2. Scripture reference must be cited with all scripture quotations or readings.
  3. Short Sermon entries have a time limit of five minutes.
  4. Presentations must be in harmony with the Statement of Fundamental Truths of the Assemblies of God. A copy of the Statement of Fundamental Truths is available Online at under the “Beliefs” tab.
  5. Entries must be original material, not just a memorization of someone else’s sermon.
  6. Participants are permitted to use illustrations, personal testimonies, statistics, stories, etc. Sources must be cited.
  7. Participants are allowed to use notes. The sermon does not need to be memorized.
  8. Participants may only use a Bible, notes, a podium, and hand-held visual aids. The festival provides only the podium.
  9. All aspects of the sermon must take place within the boundaries of the stage.
  10. The wearing of costumes is not permitted.
  11. The use of audio or audiovisual devices is not permitted. Neither flammable nor liquid visual aids are permitted.
  12. Presentations must be given with due reverence for God and His people and must not be a cynical or satirical portrayal of any form of the ministry.

Evaluation Criteria


  • Appropriate – appropriate for this festival; appropriate level of difficulty.
  • Christian message – presents a solid biblical perspective with ministry effectiveness in mind.


  • Expression/body language – use of nonverbal communication (i.e. facial expressions, hand and arm gestures) that enhance the delivery of the sermon.
  • Originality – use of original and creative ideas; demonstrates a fresh approach.
  • Posture – effective stance appropriate for public speaking, stage presence, and proper breath support.
  • Stage presence – command of stage; control, confidence, and comfort.
  • Timing – the ability to move from point to point smoothly, and with a sense of pacing; effective use of allotted time spent on opening, main points, and conclusion.
  • Vocal clarity – appropriate volume for audience; proper pronunciation of words with appropriate tone and inflection.

Presentation and Technique

  • Elicits response – demonstrates purpose of sermon with a question for a response in conclusion.
  • Opening/conclusion – use of quote, question, illustrations, or story is used to capture the audience’s interest in topic of sermon; the conclusion recaps the main points and calls for a final response.
  • Structure of content – effective, logical organization of thoughts communicated for understanding, believability, and remembrance.
  • Transitions – statements that bridge the main points of the sermon.
  • Use of illustrations – incorporates vivid image, examples, testimony, statistics, or quotations as reinforcements to sermon topic with proper recognition of sources.
  • Use of Scripture – Scriptural text/quotations foundational to overall presentation; reference(s) cited.

Overall Effectiveness

  • Evident ministry – evidence of spiritual motivation demonstrated with sincerity and passion.
  • Preparation – an apparent effort of time and thought in preparation.
  • Relevance – appropriate and relevant application.
  • Understandable concept – the sermon selection, communication, presentation and technique, and effectiveness in attaining a response.