Teresa, did the other Miss America contestants and judges know that you are a Christian?
Yes, actually, the majority of contestants, believe it or not, are Christian conservatives, I found, in the competition. And then the judges, in my interview, they have my resume in front of them, and they saw a lot of church activities and things on there, so during my interviews, several of them actually asked me questions about my faith.
Were there any specific challenges in the pageant, or part of the competition, that you had because you are a Christian?
Well, I think overall it can come from the public in general, that people do criticize you for that because I guess it’s kind of a stereotype that not only are pageant contestants brainless, but also a lot of people stereotype Christian conservatives as that way as well. And so when you win a pageant as a Christian conservative, a lot of people say, “Oh, it’s the ultimate stereotype, super brainless, of course she’s gonna win” kind of thing. And so you get a lot of that, and it’s just a matter of replying graciously.
Were you prepared for any particular questions that you were concerned about?
Not necessarily; I think that I was comfortable with any questions that could come up. I think most common of course would be about competing in a pageant that many people think is all about exterior appearance and how on earth that correlates with my Christian faith, and that was something that I was prepared to defend, because I had thought about it in my own life quite extensively.
Well, Teresa, you’re a tremendous inspiration to all of us. I want you to know that. And so until next time, I’m Mike Smith.