Essay Competition

A Credible Christ?

Newson Trust Essay Competition: Open to any theological student training for Christian ministry (lay or ordained) at the undergraduate or postgraduate level in the United Kingdom in the 2021-2022 academic year.

Do you qualify? Any student training for ordained or lay ministry is invited to submit an essay. If you are a student reflecting on Jesus for a course or module on Biblical Studies, Christology, Theology, Doctrine or Mission, you may find it suitable to adapt a piece of work in relation to one of those courses. The essay must, of course, be your own work.


  • Theme: The historical, cultural or theological significance of Jesus Christ today
  • Length: 2-3,000 words
  • First Prize: £500
  • Runner-up Prize(s): £250 each for up to two runners-up
  • Highly commended: £100 each for up to five highly commended essays. 
  • Submission date: 30 June 2021

Submit essay (word document or pdf) by emailing to:

The Theme: A Credible Christ? 

The Newson Trust is seeking essays on the theme of the relevance of Jesus Christ to culture, history and/or theology today.  This may be an original piece of work or an edited paper recently submitted as a part of a theological training course. The winning essay(s) will receive notice (and may be published subject to the author’s permission) on  The Trustees may also work with successful entrants to explore other avenues for the dissemination of their work. 

Verdict on Jesus

Verdict on Jesus was written by the Rev. Leslie Badham, formerly Vicar of Windsor and Chaplain to the Queen. The book documents how much of western literature, art and music has been written in response to Jesus’ life and work, showing the social impact of Jesus’ teaching on the formation of schools, hospitals, and universities. Rev. Badham also explored the impact of Jesus’ teaching on ethics, politics, philosophy, and science, an influence that continues to be formidable in its significance.

The Newson Trust

The Newson Trust exists primarily to ensure that all Anglican clergy in the British Isles receive a copy of Verdict on Jesus written by the Revd Leslie Badham (1908-75). Revd Badham was a Senior Scholar at what was then known as St. David’s College, Lampeter, before taking a second degree at Jesus College, Oxford. He served as an Air Force Chaplain during the Second World War, and afterwards was Rector of Rotherfield Peppard from 1946 to 1958, Vicar of Windsor from 1958 to 1973, and Chaplain to Her Majesty the Queen from 1964 to 1975. He combined his Church ministry with radio broadcasting, lecturing and writing. His other publications include These Greatest Things and Love Speaks from the Cross.