I guess this is a health-related post — let’s call it mental health — because I really want to write about this great new app. It is called Confession and you can get it at the iPad App store for $1.99 — such a bargain? Although it is designed to be used in the confessional, there is nothing to stop you from using it at your convenience – this is the App Age after all. There is a warning, however, that “this app is intended to be used during the Sacrament of Penance with a Catholic priest only. This is not a substitute for a valid confession.”
Blessed by the Catholic Church?
From what I heard on NPR (if you can trust them) is that the app has the blessing of the Catholic Church. In fact, the text of the app was developed in collaboration with Rev. Thomas G. Weinandy, OFM. Executive Director of the Secretariat for Doctrine and Pastoral Practices of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops and Rev. Dan Scheidt, pastor of Queen of Peace Catholic Church in Mishawaka, In. The description of the app goes on to say, “this app received an imprimatur from Bishop Kevin C. Rhodes of the Diocese of Fort Wayne – South Bend. It is the first known imprimatur to be given for an iPhone/iPad app.”
The app allows multiple users, each with their own sign in so you can’t peek at each other’s sins. The app sign in has another built-in protection – you can’t say your vocation is Priest if you say your sex is female.
Check off your sins
Once you have signed in, you can go to the Examination of Conscience and click on each of the 10 Commandments to check off your sins. For example, when you click on the 6th Commandment – You shall not commit adultery – you get a list of 9 sub-sins, such as:
- Have the sexual acts in my marriage not been open to the transmission of new life?*
- Have I been guilty of masturbation*
- Have I not sought to control my thoughts?
- Have I been guilty of any homosexual activity?*
- Am I not careful to dress modestly?
(* I think it is these questions that have earned this app a 9+ rating for the following: infrequent/mild mature/suggestive themes)
You can also create a custom list of your own particular type of sins. They will appear in an additional checklist you can go to after you have completed the Commandment sins.
Next, you click on the “Confession” button and it gives you the proper language to start off the confession. You can click back to the “Examination” button to then read off your sins since the last confession.
You finish up with the Act of Contrition (provided) and some traditional prayers (also provided). Slick.
The app has 16 five star ratings out of the 23 posted. There were 2 one stars: “Ridiculous” “This is trash you cannot confess your sins on an app…” and one that was a bit disturbing “Regarding: Our gay son Peter and how your application has harmed him. May God forgive you….”
Like I say, there is an app for everything nowadays. (Love the logo, BTW).