Below, you'll see any text that was highlighted with comments from the reviewer.
Message to Readers
Hey! I would love some reviews on this!
I like that your word choice at the beginning is so innocent and childlike. You haven't over-complicated it or confused it by adding details which you only really learned later in your life. It makes for a simple yet clear understanding of what Church was like for you as a young child. I feel like I am seeing this experience through a six-year-olds eyes as opposed to a distant memory, which implies that this experience is important to you and is still vivid in your own mind.
This is an interesting one, because the crackers already symbolise something outside of this piece of writing. However, in this piece you have managed to give them extra meaning. They've become about your own growth and about your changing understanding and relationship with your God. The story might centre around the crackers, but you have managed to weave in so much more!
I feel like the second half of the piece kind of strays away from the crackers a little bit. Maybe you could describe what it is like to eat the crackers now you are old enough. What do they taste like? And how exactly does it make you feel when you are eating them? The content of this section is really meaningful but I think that could be strengthened a little by a physical experience to tie those thoughts to.
I actually really like the beginning and I'm not sure I would change anything. It certainly drew me in! The only other way I can think to begin is to go straight in with the question you ask, because that would bring the crackers to attention straight away, but I think it works well as it is.
I found this really interesting. This is not what I'd have thought of when I read the prompt but it works exceptionally well as a tool for talking about something which is clearly very important to you. I am 'the outsider' you mention in the second last sentence, but I feel like for a few minutes this essay has brought me into this world and given me a new layer of understanding. I hope you do well in the competition because this is a 'cracker' of a piece ;) (sorry I really couldn't help myself).