LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - Lufkin's First United Pentecostal Church is gearing up for this year's North American Bible Quizzing Tournament and with nearly 100 trophies under their belt, the team has their eyes on the prize.
"Bible quizzing is a program that is headed up by the United Pentecostal International. It's something that our church has been involved in for about 25 years now and the gist of it is we have teenagers between the age of 12 and 19 in the senior division and they memorize between 400 and 500 verses per year," said Chad Nash, a member of the church.
The church has made it past the state rounds and will be moving onto the national tournament in Saint Louis, Missouri on August 2-6, and Nash said the team has been incredibly successful for over a decade.
"Out of the 13 past years, 11 of those years we have brought home a national trophy so the team has been very successful," Nash said.
Bible quizzing is easy, Nash said.
"They can be asked a very wide range of questions--they can just be asked to just quote the verse or they can be asked questions about the verse and they compete in those monthly tournaments," Nash said.
Bible quizzing students can study from 8-10 hours a day, Nash said. This year, the team will participate in the Senior Division, which is an intermediate division of quizzing for 12-14 year olds. According to the NABQT website, there is also an Experienced division for advanced quizzers between the ages 12 and 18 years old. Nash said they have had quizzers in this division for several years, but this year is the they will not.
However, in order for the team's to compete, the players have to be incredibly skillful, Nash said.
"The very best quizzers can pull up any 500 verses within, and quote them, within 10 seconds," Nash said.
This year, there will be about 80 to 90 teams competing at the national level and Nash said there will be about 50 teams within their division. He said the church takes the quizzes very seriously, but there is a thrill to the game.
"The thrill of the competition is certainly part of it. I love to play sports, but I never had anything like sitting down at the quiz board; that adrenaline rush after hours and hours of study for just a 20-minute time frame of pinning yourself against other people," Nash said.
The kids who will be competing in the competition are Rhett Price, 14, Shelby Jones, 13, Kelton Sanderson, 12, Sadie Price, 13, and Isaac Dove, 14.
The church is looking for any businesses that are interested in sponsoring the group as they make their way to the tournament. For anyone interested, contact the church at