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$15.00 USD

The annual Poetry of the Sacred contest will be open for submissions July 19 through August 14, 2021. This year’s final judge, Ricardo Nazario-Colon, will select three honorable mentions to receive $100, and one winning poem to be awarded the $500 Thomas Merton Prize in Poetry of the Sacred. The winning poem will be published in an upcoming winter issue of Parabola Magazine, an internationally recognized magazine devoted to the sacred.

Submission Details:

  • Entry fee of $15 per one poem, non-refundable. (Some entry fee scholarships are available on a limited first come, first serve basis. Please email will@interfaithrelations.org for details.)
  • Online submissions only. (If you are unable to submit online, please email will@interfaithrelations.org or call 502.583.3100 Monday-Thursday 9am-5pm EST.)
  • Submissions should be one single piece of work. Please do not include multiple poems in one entry.
  • Submissions should be less than 1,000 words.
  • Submitted work should be unpublished. Simultaneous submissions are expected and welcome.
  • Poem must be anonymous—the author’s name or address must not appear anywhere on the attached document containing the poem.

Final poems will be selected in early September and all applicants will be notified of the winning poem and three honorable mentions via email. Announcements will also be made online and through the general Center for Interfaith Relations and Festival of Faiths email communications.


The Center for Interfaith Relations' mission is to celebrate the diversity of faith traditions, express gratitude for our unity and strengthen the role of faith in society through common action.

If you have the capacity, please consider donating a scholarship entry for another entrant. 

We use Submittable to accept and review our submissions.