Need to pray? Try iRosary

Technology has come to praying the rosary.

The Catholic Sentinel, newspaper of the Archdiocese of Portland, Ore., recently reported that a new iPhone app, iRosary, helps guide the faithful through the rosary and the mysteries on any particular day. It also allows a user to stop the prayer and return at a later time in case you’re interrupted.

Developed by Dave and Jackie Brown, parishioners at St. Francis Church in Bend, the application has been around for about a year. The couple’s idea for the app arose after their young daughter, Isabella, made an unexpected recovery from leukemia. They said they wanted others to experience the comfort of prayer, particularly the rosary.

Isabella is doing fine now. And the Browns are offering iRosary through iTunes at $2.99 per download. It recently surpassed the 20,000 download mark, making it the most popular Catholic application on the site.

Reporter Ed Langlois wrote that the small screen depicts animated beads that can be moved with a touch. Corresponding prayers pop up on the screen along with devotional images.

Another popular app allows traveling Catholics to find local Mass times. It’s a free download and is available at

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5 Responses to Need to pray? Try iRosary

  1. Thanks. Too bad, though, that you didn’t give the Liturgy of the Hours equal billing since it IS the “offical prayer of the whole Church.”

    iBreviary is an extremely well designed prayer app that helps people pray the canonical hours using their iPhone, iPod Touch and even Google’s Android smartphones.

  2. Dave Brown says:

    I am the co-creator of iRosary with my wife Jackie. I’d like to thank CNS for mentioning iRosary on this blog.

    We wrote iRosary to help people learn the rosary. However, we have learned mobile applications have a unique ability (since they can be found and used almost anywhere) to bring people closer to God. Here are a few examples from the hundreds of e-mails we have received:

    A woman was in adoration discussing with God how she can bring the rosary into her life. She was frustrated because she felt a pull toward Mary, but had never been able to pray the rosary. Right then, she pulled out her iPhone searched for rosary programs and downloaded iRosary. It guided her through praying the Luminous mysteries as she sat in the presence of Jesus, thanking Him for the guidance.

    Another woman was in the hospital with her grandmother who wanted to pray the rosary. Her grandmother only spoke Spanish and there were no rosaries to be found, much less a Spanish prayer book. Remembering her iPhone, this woman downloaded iRosary, switched it to Spanish prayers, and was able to pray the rosary with her grandmother before she passed.

    We receive a lot of e-mail from people who never have their rosary beads around when they have time to pray (e.g. waiting in lines) or they have their rosary but cannot remember the prayers. Since they always have their phone with them, iRosary is helping them not only learn the rosary, but to pray it regularly.

    I used iRosary for my examples since I am familiar with it, but there are other great mobile programs for Catholics, such as iMissal, IBreviary, and iPieta. These mobile Catholic programs are helping people pray, find the nearest church, follow the Mass, and learn how to be better Catholics. And there are many more opportunities to use this technology for God’s service! I look forward to the creative ways Catholics find to use it for His will.

    God Bless You!

  3. Reginald Tarimo po box 14 heunaar 8611 south Africa. says:

    notify me through post adress given above and send me some rosaries to distribute to people inthe desert of south africa.
    there are many people need the rosary, we always pray and offer mass but few come because they do not know the importance of it very much. even last year it was shame very few turned for the october rosary.

  4. Thanks for mentioning our iPhone Mass Times lookup powered Our mission with the application and Web site is to help Catholics find Mass. More importantly we do not want to send anyone to an empty pew based on inaccurate info. We now have over 20,000 installations since our launch in mid October 2009. We have been working daily updating our database and invite church administrators and parishioners to help us keep the data accurate. We are also working on a Droid version for the newwer Smartphones and the new Google phone. Again thank you!

  5. There is a growing number of Rosary apps, each with their own unique user interfaces and objectives.

    We just got our first Rosary app, hopefully of several to come, that focuses on being easy to use with a minimal interface. You can operate this one with your eyes closed. With one glance you can see the entire Rosary and where you are in it:

    We have several other Catholic apps in the pipeline. Having digital prayer tools is a great way to both be a grace on your phone, but also be there for you in a pinch, like in the wonderful story from above.

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