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Mulford feels good vibes about Bible Bee

October 04, 2009|By DAN DEARTH

HAGERSTOWN -- Hagerstown resident Isaac Mulford is all abuzz about earning a chance to compete in the National Bible Bee next month in Washington, D.C.

The Bible Bee is similar to a spelling bee, except contestants recite Bible facts and passages rather than spell words. Participants compete in age groups: 7 to 10, 11 to 14 and 15 to 18.

The difficulty of the questions increases with the age of the contestants.

Isaac, 8, who is a fourth-grader at Shalom Christian Academy in Marion, Pa., won the local Bible Bee in Gettysburg, Pa., on Sept. 12.

Because Isaac's score in his age group (7 to 10) was among the top 100 in the country, he will advance to the finals on Nov. 5 and 6. The winner will receive a trophy and a $25,000 prize.

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"I've always wanted a trophy," said Isaac, adding that the prize money would be used to fund his education. "I don't think I have a weak point ... I have a pretty strong feeling I'm gonna win."

Isaac said his favorite book of the Bible is Revelation.

"It's just really exciting," he said. "It's about the end of time and all kinds of cool stuff happens."

Isaac said he is preparing for the Bible Bee by reviewing 1,048 Bible verses that he learned over the summer.

According to the Bible Bee's Web site, the average score in Isaac's age group during the competition in September was 384. Isaac's score was 432.

Mark Mulford, Isaac's father, said he learned early on that his son was gifted.

Isaac memorized 119 Bible verses in first grade, 342 in second grade and 659 in third grade, the elder Mulford said. When Isaac was 3, he memorized a map of the United States and all 50 capitals.

"It's hard to keep the buttons on my shirt from all the pride I feel in the little fella," Mark Mulford said. "He just amazes."

Mark Mulford said Isaac attends Shalom Christian Academy because of the family's strong Christian beliefs.

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