iPray! Smart phone applications for the tech-savvy Catholic

By Caroline Hroncich

VATICAN CITY — Looking for apps to help enhance your faith? What apps are out there for the tech-savvy Catholic?

If you simply type “Prayer” into the Apple Application store, you will immediately be bombarded by around 2,000 results. So to save you spending hours searching through pages of applications, I have compiled a list of some of the most reliable faith applications.

The Pope App The Pope App

Sponsored by the Vatican, The Pope App is essentially an all-access pass to Pope Francis. Users can choose to live stream papal events via The Pope App and they also have access to a calendar containing the dates of future events. One of the The Pope App’s unique features is the webcam option which allows users to stream live feeds from places like St. Peter’s Square and St Peter’s Basilica. This application is available for iPhone and Android.

Missio Missio

The Missio application, officially launched by Pope Francis himself, is a great way to stay up-to-date on Vatican news and evangelization. It is available for iPhone and Android and allows users to access global Catholic news. Missio also includes the latest Catholic News Service videos!

iBreviary iBreviary

iBreviary is an application that gives users access to a the Breviary prayer book. It offers daily readings, prayers of the daily Mass and other prayers in English, Spanish, Italian, Dutch, French, Latin and Romanian. iBreviary is available for iPhone and Android.

iMissal iMissal

iMissal is available for iPhone, Android, Windows’ Phone, Blackberry and Kindle. This application allows users to receive complete missals, prayers, and biblical verses directly to their phone. There is also a Saint-a-Day add-on available for purchase on iMissal which allows users to learn about the lives of different saints.

Confession: A Roman Catholic App Confession

The Confession Application is available for iPhone, and Android, and is designed to help users prepare for the Sacrament of Confession. It is easy to personalize and provides a step-by-step guide for users. The Confession Application also has a section for personal reflection and is available in English, Spanish, Portuguese and Italian.

My Year of Faith Application My year of faith

The My Year of Faith App is available for iPhone and Android and was created in direct response to the Vatican’s Year of Faith initiative. This application provides users with suggested readings, daily challenges and an interactive calendar. My Year of Faith also connects users to other forms of social media by allowing them to tweet or Facebook post directly from the application.

Editor’s note: Caroline Hroncich is a student at Villanova University and is interning at Catholic News Service’s Rome bureau for the semester.

A tale of two interviews


Pope Francis in Assisi, Italy, Oct. 4. (CNS photo/Paul Haring)

VATICAN CITY — The publication of Italian journalist Eugenio Scalfari’s interview with Pope Francis last week raised an international stir, comparable to that previously excited by the pope’s interview with his Jesuit confrere, Father Antonio Spadaro. Both articles showed the pope speaking in characteristically frank style about matters of heaven and earth.

But it turns out there is an important difference between the two texts that readers should bear in mind when quoting or interpreting words attributed to the pope.

The earlier interview, published in America magazine and several other Jesuit publications, was “carefully reviewed in detail,” so the “particular statements in it are absolutely trustworthy,” Jesuit Father Federico Lombardi, the Vatican spokesman, told CNS.

The Scalfari interview is another matter. Doubts about its accuracy were raised and confirmed last week with regard to an oft-quoted passage in which Pope Francis supposedly described his state of mind immediately following his election in March, including a moment when he considered turning down the papacy. It turns out that moment must have occurred after he had already formally accepted his election.

That particular passage of Scalfari’s article is a “reconstruction and not a transcript” of the pope’s words, Father Lombardi said, declining to say whether other portions were based on notes or a recording. He added that the article, which has been reprinted in the Vatican newspaper, “should be considered faithful on the whole to the mind of the pope, but not necessarily in its particular words and the accuracy of its details.”