The Moral Courage Foundation’s mission is “to inspire young people to live up to the moral standards of the Bible and to encourage them to courageously promote those moral values in our society, even in the face of opposition, rejection or persecution.”  

To carry out its mission, the foundation will provide more than $25,000 in college scholarships to high school graduates who have demonstrated moral courage in their lives, according to a press release from the organization.  

Three scholarships will be presented to students in the 12th grade at an awards ceremony at 6 p.m. Tuesday, May 6, at College Street Church of Christ.  The first place winner will receive a $25,000 scholarship with second and third place receiving $1,000 each.  

The winners will be selected from Waxahachie ISD, Cornerstone Eagle Advantage School in Waxahachie, Waxahachie Preparatory Academy or be an active member of a sponsoring church and be enrolled in a high school in Ellis County.

The foundation believes that morality begins with a respect for God and his will as expressed in the inspired writings of the Bible and that the concept of morality has its roots in the Ten Commandments and is further developed through the writings of the New Testament.

“The Moral Courage Foundation is honoring young people who are committed to the pursuit of morality in their personal lives,” said state Rep. Jim Pitts, secretary of the foundation. “The Moral Courage Board looked specifically for those students whose lives were characterized by the following traits and behaviors – compassion, kindness, service to others, integrity, honesty, freedom from addictive behaviors, sexual purity and demonstrated a relationship with God, including active involvement in a local church.”

“The Moral Courage Foundation is thrilled to be the first organization of its kind to offer support to a great student, not one with great grades, but to one with great moral courage,” said Roy Orr, vice chairman of the board. “We hope this program is contagious and will eventually be presented in every city throughout the state and nation.”

Funds for the scholarship have been raised through various means.  A Moral Courage Rally took place in September at the Waxahachie High School, where the scholarship was officially announced, as well as the kickoff of the scholarship nomination and application period.

Plans are under way for the 2009 Moral Courage Scholarship fund.  

“We pray that citizens participate financially by making a pledge or a one-time donation,” said Paul O’Rear, advisory board chairman. “It certainly takes a village to raise a child and this is a perfect example.”