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​OSV Institute for Catholic Innovation announces finalists for 2021 OSV Challenge Showcase

September 17, 2021 | posted by Today's Catholic newspaper

Topics: Vocations


OSV Institute for Catholic Innovation announces finalists for 2021 OSV Challenge Showcase

OSV Institute for Catholic Innovation prepares to gather their “innovation tribe” of fellow trailblazing Catholics eager to experience the beauty, creativity, imagination, and innovation in the Church at the 2021 OSV Challenge Showcase.

The Showcase is a free virtual event taking place on September 18 that serves as the capstone for the second annual OSV Challenge, a multi-round entrepreneurial competition designed to accelerate unique project ideas in any stage from Catholics whose faith has motivated them to make a difference. After the successful completion of a six-week Accelerator program co-facilitated by the University of St. Thomas in Houston (UST), 12 finalists have been selected to compete for a shot at winning one of three $100,000 prizes to advance their missions. The three winners will be announced during the live-stream event at 2:30 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 18.

This year’s 12 finalists include the Salesian Sisters Fiat Project led by Sister Bernadette Mota, Bendecida XV, Catholic in Recovery, Cycle Prep, Dragon Slayers, FemCatholic, MyCatholicDoctor, Perfect Love Casts Out Fear, Quo Vadis Catholic, Red Bird Ministries, Springs in the Desert, and Tabella. Additional information on the 2021 OSV Challenge finalists can be found at https://www.osvchallenge.com/2021-finalists.

More than just a contest, the OSV Challenge is a unique experience for participants who aim to think beyond the status quo and to view the Catholic Church through the lenses of innovation and creativity. “We are not aiming to fund the next good idea, but to invest in people -- emerging innovators and seasoned trailblazers -- by forming a new generation of entrepreneurs who are not afraid to relook at how we encounter and evangelize through the Truth and beauty of the Catholic Church,” says Jason Shanks, president of OSV Institute for Catholic Innovation. “The Church has always been at the forefront of great ideas. I believe this year’s finalists have demonstrated their ability to make a big impact on the Church and the world.”

Finalists will offer their sharpened pitches virtually to a panel of five judges, in the presence of event attendees, and will be evaluated based on the OSV Challenge value of “Leave a Legacy” focusing on the most groundbreaking ideas with the most potential impact to their target audience. “After hearing pitches and reading business plans from the 24 semifinalists, it was extremely hard to narrow the field to 12. After much prayer and discernment, these 12 innovative ideas moving forward can serve the Church and the world in important ways. There were nearly 600 initial applicants to this year's Challenge, and OSV would like to thank all of them for their willingness to take a leap of faith in applying,” said Dr. Matt Smith, director of Strategic Alliances for the OSV Institute for Catholic Innovation.

In addition to hearing from each of the 12 finalists and being among the first to experience the joy of the winners announcement at the OSV Challenge Showcase, virtual attendees will have other special opportunities available to them during the event.