I recently downloaded an app to my iPhone that I think brilliant for Catholics in this techie age—it’s called “Confession” and it’s billed as A Roman Catholic App. It’s actually sanctioned by the Catholic Church.
Here’s a little something about me… I’m one who needs to write down a tally sheet of sins I need to talk about when I go to Confession—not because I’m so active in my sinning but so I can stay on track and actually make a good confession (that word is key to understanding the purpose to the process, after all). I actually keep a written Act of Contrition in my wallet, just to have the words fresh in my memory, as I’ve been known to freeze up in the confessional and totally forget what to say when the priest asks me to recite it after doing all my confessing.
So, when I read about the Confession app, I just had to get it. This handy tech-based tutorial keeps track of your last confession date—so you actually know how longs it’s been in between—and through a series of questions, prompts dialogue for a full examination of conscience of what needs to be confessed, going beyond just the standard ticking off the Ten Commandments on your fingers. And the app is password protected, so no one else can read your history.
Of late I’ve been thinking of designing an app or two myself…I’ve got lots of ideas. But it also prompts me to think about the use of technology in today’s world for everything we do from music to work to various forms of (often questionable) entertainment.
And I wonder if we aren’t missing something when we rely on technology to do our thinking. There was a favorite book of mine when I was about 12 titled Are You There God? It’s me, Margaret— classic stuff with a message just as appropriate for this era of tech-savvy preteen girls as it was when I was that age. Margaret had the right idea with her direct line of communication from her to God. She needed no special invitation, no telephone, no computer. She simply sought Him out to talk with.
As we veer away from the act of actually communicating in favor of texting, IMs and who knows what else on the technology horizon, there is much pointing us away from direct discourse with one another, let alone with God.
And as today’s world seems to be slipping further from knowing how to talk with God, it’s only half tongue-in-cheek that I wonder…you got an app for that?