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Itunes Confession App


mercyngrace

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The "perfect aid for every penitent":

Are you a sinner? Don't worry, there's an app for that. The Roman Catholic Church has approved a recent iTunes addition called Confession, a $1.99 app that bills itself as "the perfect aid for every penitent." As you can see above, it lets you pick a commandment and tick off all your sins, keeping a running tally to bring into the confessional with you -- a sort of anti-tasklist, if you will. Can't find your particular misstep? No problem! You're able to add your own, custom dastardly deeds, filling in those gaps the app's authors didn't think anyone would fill. Now all it needs is a random sin selector: shake the phone to instantly get a wicked suggestion. That certainly could make boring Thursday nights at the dormitory a little more exciting.

confessional-2011-02-08.jpg.jpg

Perhaps the LDS church can follow suit with a DIY Temple Recommend app. Then you can get your own recommend, download it, and your bar code can be scanned right off your iphone at the front desk. :P

What do you think?

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I would say that's the major difference about trying to develop a Temple Recommend app for LDS versus this app.

Taking the role of the bishop out of the process can't be good (even though I know you're kidding)

Sinners tend to fall into the same rut and only confess the same repeated sins. Having an app to give the individual a broader self-examination of one self prior to seeing the priest can't be a bad thing IMO especially for those who may have been away from the church for a while.

Now I may need to buy it just so I could share with my students.....staying up with technology as an adult to keep up with our kids can be a bear at times.

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If there is a sense of awkwardness due to a long absence and feeling like one is unfamiliar with the process, this could be reassuring to use. It's not as if it is the full confessional act, but rather a reminder list. If it makes it easier for people to go to confession, I can understand why the RCC approved it.

I would be concerned about someone using it to obsess about sins, but likely that type of person doesn't need an app for that.

Having an app to give the individual a broader self-examination of one self
Wondering how many specific sins are listed in the app....
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If there is a sense of awkwardness due to a long absence and feeling like one is unfamiliar with the process, this could be reassuring to use. It's not as if it is the full confessional act, but rather a reminder list. If it makes it easier for people to go to confession, I can understand why the RCC approved it.

I would be concerned about someone using it to obsess about sins, but likely that type of person doesn't need an app for that.

Wondering how many specific sins are listed in the app....

Instead of having the law written on the flashy tables of the heart we write it on the silicon tablets of apple...

:P I love it!

edit:

Cal, It's probably just me but I can't see how this app could be useful to anyone but obsessive box checkers. If your desire is to keep the commandments, do you need an app to remind you to confess and forsake? If your desire is to live sinfully, will an app change your heart?

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Instead of having the law written on the flashy tables of the heart we write it on the silicon tablets of apple...

;) I love it!

edit:

Cal, It's probably just me but I can't see how this app could be useful to anyone but obsessive box checkers. If your desire is to keep the commandments, do you need an app to remind you to confess and forsake?

MNG,

After our FB exchanges yesterday and being impressed with our conversation, I'm rather amused that you're tripped up on this. :P

While there are thousands of sins, they all break one (or more) of the ten commandments. You can approach your examination of yourself by trying point the finger at one of the many sins or you can review each commandment and see if you're living up to God's standards in regards to the commandment.

If your desire is to live sinfully, will an app change your heart?

From my POV, if a person is willing to really look at themselves by going through such an app, they're already taking the steps to change their heart. People who live sinfully do not take the time.

Not that I know a single Catholic who would read the 120 page section of the Catechism to review all what's probably on the app, I see no problem with having the app.

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MNG,

After our FB exchanges yesterday and being impressed with our conversation, I'm rather amused that you're tripped up on this. :P

Not tripped up. Amused. Very amused. :crazy:

While there are thousands of sins, they all break one (or more) of the ten commandments. You can approach your examination of yourself by trying point the finger at one of the many sins or you can review each commandment and see if you're living up to God's standards in regards to the commandment.

Yep, I agree. Though you could probably hang all the law and the prophets on just two commandments. ;)

edit: I'm glad you reminded me about our FB conversation.... here are some references:

http://lds.org/general-conference/1995/10/-this-do-in-remembrance-of-me-?lang=eng

http://lds.org/ensign/2010/02/this-do-in-remembrance-of-me?lang=eng

Even in 3 Nephi, the Savior refers to the bread as "my flesh" and to the wine as "my blood".

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Yep, I agree. Though you could probably hang all the law and the prophets on just two commandments. :P

Jesus summed up the 10 commandments very nicely in those two commandments. ;)

I'm amused there's a 120 page section in the catechism to review it all based on those two commandments. That's a lot of review on the commandments for sure.

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I'm sitting here trying to make sense of the sin of "not seeking to surrender myself to God's word as taught by the Church". What in the world??

Not following the scriptures?

Looks like the app is just an interactive version of this one: http://inet4.swtjc.c...lic/adults.html

add-on: found a pdf that has a child's version and they phrase that question as "Have I rejected any Church teaching or denied that I was Catholic."

http://docs.google.com/viewer?a=v&q=cache:OTOmYpbOCtUJ:www.holytrinityparish.net/Links/A%2520Guide%2520to%2520Confession.doc+not+seeking+to+surrender+myself+to+God%27s+word+as+taught+by+the+Churc&hl=en&gl=us&pid=bl&srcid=ADGEEShlde4ZXrQ8DN98AOWGmGMiAz-3mRJl2nyoASIn6YvZFuGAy-6J6SLr74uJgW9520C1zqdZsmuadgJEG441QbJwbNlqVDPnJ2Hcq0kjLhpq_TBmywhJlp07IZvbWDFp8clgi3cm&sig=AHIEtbQ5inbtFyXYAbrH1ODsXsMkGwczsQ

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A side question--I know that Catholics get accused of being works oriented. I am now thinking they get accused of living by a checklists of commandments rather than by the Spirit as LDS often do. Am I right?

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A side question--I know that Catholics get accused of being works oriented. I am now thinking they get accused of living by a checklists of commandments rather than by the Spirit as LDS often do. Am I right?

I would seriously hesitate to generalise about Catholics. There are so many different "flavours" of Catholicism, and its members are no more religiously homogeneous than LDS are (I would say they are less, but that is a very subjective judgement).

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Actually, this Confession app seems like quite a good idea, when you get right down to it. I understand that you use it as a tickler so you get all your sins off your chest in the confessional instead of racking your brains trying to remember what it was you did that you shouldn't. From a Catholic POV, I'd say this was a good use of an iPhone (or iTouch).

And besides that, I've been casting my mind about, trying to think of some kind of app to write for Windows Phone 7 that hasn't already been done to death for that platform, or is so obtuse as to be unsaleable, and this iPhone app for Confession prep has given me one! Not per se a confession app, and this is not the time or place to talk about it (keyword: Ben Franklin), but this is the first halfway useful app idea I've had in a few weeks. It must be the dry season, or something.

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I would be concerned about someone using it to obsess about sins, but likely that type of person doesn't need an app for that.
I think you may be slowly understanding the Catholic mindset... :crazy:

A side question--I know that Catholics get accused of being works oriented. I am now thinking they get accused of living by a checklists of commandments rather than by the Spirit as LDS often do. Am I right?

I'm not of the impression that we ever were accused of living by a checklist thing, but my first impression was that you didn't understand the "Catholic Guilt" thing. I went looking for a reasonable definition of this and still haven't found one that seems appropriate. Technically, Catholics are told that we aren't suppose to die with mortal sins on our souls and need to go to confession in this case. Hearing stories of older generations going to confession weekly, an outsider should wonder what mortal sins these apparent devout folks could possibly be commiting. IMO, accepting blame is almost a cultural thing in Catholicism because Catholics always examine their conscience. Older generations did this naturally while the new generation needs an app. I'm not surprised the RCC gave it's blessing for it.

I would seriously hesitate to generalise about Catholics. There are so many different "flavours" of Catholicism, and its members are no more religiously homogeneous than LDS are (I would say they are less, but that is a very subjective judgement).

nicolasconnault,

With the typical mindset of 'Catholic guilt', I would be surprised if you found a devout Catholic taking any type of offense at the way the comment could be taken...... ;)

This phenomena baffled my righteous LDS wife at times in regards to the 'Catholic guilt' thing I seemed to exemplify. :P ....a cultural stumbling block IMO.

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I would seriously hesitate to generalise about Catholics. There are so many different "flavours" of Catholicism, and its members are no more religiously homogeneous than LDS are (I would say they are less, but that is a very subjective judgement).

I was more generalizing about 'anti-Catholics' than Catholics. I was thinking about accusations made against Catholics, which would not necessarily be true just as they are not all true with LDS.

Just to be clear....

-----

blue adept, I have been told about the Catholic Guilt complex in the past, certainly see it referred to quite a bit in media but wasn't sure if it was a false or true stereotype, whether it was based more on a cultural thing (in the media, the Catholic with guilt is usually from an Italianish family) or could be justified by those wanting to through doctrine (just as some LDS get lost in the lists because of their attempts to build hedges around our doctrine).

When you come across a good article on it, I would love to see it.

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blue adept, I have been told about the Catholic Guilt complex in the past, certainly see it referred to quite a bit in media but wasn't sure if it was a false or true stereotype, whether it was based more on a cultural thing (in the media, the Catholic with guilt is usually from an Italianish family) or could be justified by those wanting to through doctrine (just as some LDS get lost in the lists because of their attempts to build hedges around our doctrine).

When you come across a good article on it, I would love to see it.

Pre-Vatican (1960's) I believe 'Catholic guilt' is a given fact amongst any practicing Catholics of the time and prior to that as far as I'm concerned. Change is slow in the RCC and I would say you would have to get to the late 1980's before you find a generation who have no real clue what 'Catholic guilt' is. I'll see if I can find a reference.

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Pre-Vatican (1960's) I believe 'Catholic guilt' is a given fact amongst any practicing Catholics of the time and prior to that as far as I'm concerned. Change is slow in the RCC and I would say you would have to get to the late 1980's before you find a generation who have no real clue what 'Catholic guilt' is. I'll see if I can find a reference.

I've heard of it among Irish catholics as well, though I don't know as much as I should about Catholicism. The Irish are just weird, though. (I'm a kilt wearin', haggis eatin' Ulster Scot, so I can say that without being insulting.)

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FYI: The Vatican does not allow confessions by a proxy app. Nor was it the intent for such to be by the app developer.

Confession App Developer Agrees 100% With Vatican Clarification

From the developer:

"This app is intended to help a person prepare for the sacrament of confession," he stated. "It is not intended to function as a replacement for confession!"

From a Vatican spokesman (?):

"It is essential to understand well that the sacrament of penance requires necessarily the relationship of personal dialogue between penitent and confessor, as well as absolution on the part of the confessor present."

"This cannot be substituted by any information technology application," he said, thus, "in no way can one speak of 'confession through the iPhone.'"

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FYI: The Vatican does not allow confessions by a proxy app. Nor was it the intent for such to be by the app developer.

Confession App Developer Agrees 100% With Vatican Clarification

From the developer:

From a Vatican spokesman (?):

The title of the Thread is a bit confusing, but I think the article linked to make it clear is was for preparation prior to confession.
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FYI: The Vatican does not allow confessions by a proxy app. Nor was it the intent for such to be by the app developer.

Thanks for adding that Nofear. Part of the reason the concept struck my funny bone was the way it was being described in the BBC News article:

It also allows them to examine their conscience based on personalised factors such as age, sex and marital status - but it is not intended to replace traditional confession entirely.
BBC News

It really doesn't replace confession at all.

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Thanks for adding that Nofear. Part of the reason the concept struck my funny bone was the way it was being described in the BBC News article....

It really doesn't replace confession at all.

Too funny, I hadn't caught that.

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I have confessed to my bishop over email, apparently nothing grievous I don't know why I got all worked up about stuff, but he wrote me back and said that his wife can also read his emails...oh boy really? So now I write him letters and send them out by my carrier pigeon Angela, again apparently nothing grievous!

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