News Story

Local Latter-day Saint shines in National Writing Competition 

Mrs. Tricia Allen, a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter- day Saints was honored, as a Silver Medalist, in a national writing competition sponsored by the Jamaica Cultural Development Commission. The JCDC is tasked with preserving “the tangible culture of Jamaica”, and is an agency of the Ministry of Culture. The event, held on 26 January 2015, was the official opening of the “Creative Writing Exhibition Tour”, and took place in the Saint James Parish Library in Montego Bay. Over 400 entries were received for this competition which is held annually and dates back to 1964. There are five categories and each entry must be submitted in both the written and electronic form.

About 50 persons were there to listen to the readings, and participate in other ways. Among these were staff and students from several schools including; James Preparatory School and Eber Preparatory School and Montego Bay Infant School. These young persons were encouraged to take pride in the Parish Library and the exhibitions, and were encouraged that, “You are never too young to write”.

Rev. Marc Mullins JP, from the Faith Works Ministries offered the invocation. In the audience were Ms. Natalie Morris JP  who is  the Regional Manager  of the JCDC, Kyesha Randall,Regional Assistant with the JCDC. Representing the Church of Jesus Christ of latter-day Saints were missionaries, leaders and members visiting from the United States of America.

Sister Allen read her award-winning short story aloud. She gave her work the title, “Anancy and the Three Legged Dog”, both of the title characters are traditional in African folk stories. Anancy is a trickster who is half spider and half man. Tricia set her story in current times, rather than in the usual, “Long, long ago” time... She was a poised speaker and her presentation was enjoyed by those present and prompted many smiles and laughter.

Mrs. Pauline Davis MSc. Ed, Head of the Language Arts Department at Sam Sharp Teacher's' College addressed the group and said, “Whatever you write, bring something worthwhile to humanity that will take them to a place of healing.”

Another Silver Award winner, Treisha Williams, also did a presentation. There was an “open mike” segment when anyone could share material they had authored. Several of the children and the adults attending, read poems, stories or articles they had written. The quality of the writing was impressive.

Sister Tricia Allen is employed by the Elephant Group, a retailer of Home Service Providers located in Montego Bay, where she writes online content. She attended the University of the West Indies in Kingston where she received her Bachelor's degree in English Literature. Beginning  in her teens, and continuing to the present time, over 40 of her poems have been published in the Jamaica Observer and Jamaica Gleaner newspapers. In 2014 she completed writing her first novel, which is a children's book. She lives in Montego Bay, with her husband who leads the local congregration of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, where she is the chorister and also teaches a seminary of religion to a group of youth being the ages of 14 to 17.

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