US Catholic Church leaders have launched the USA Catholic Church mobile app offering exclusive coverage of Pope Francis’ visit to the US between September 22-27.
Bishop Christopher J Coyne, chairman-elect of the Committee on Communications of the US Conference of Catholic Bishops, which created the app, said: “This is the most comprehensive virtual connection to the Catholic faith available.
Bishop Coyne, who heads the Diocese of Burlington, Vermont, said: “We understand many people are looking for more ways to connect with the church and incorporate Catholic living into their busy lives – that’s exactly what this app is designed to do.”
He made the comments in a statement yesterday announcing the launch of the US church’s first mobile app.
The USA Catholic Church app, available for use in the US, is free to download at Google Play and Apple iTunes in English and Spanish. It also can be downloaded for free via the site www.USACatholic.church using a smartphone or tablet device.
The announcement said the app is “designed to draw millions of Catholics closer to their faith by providing access to church information on all screens and devices.
“This is the only app that brings together information from all Catholic sources: parishes, dioceses, the US bishops and even the Vatican,” it said. “Not only will the app include religious news, daily Scripture readings and local parish content, it will feature exclusive, in-depth coverage of Pope Francis’ September visit to the United States.”
Content is available in both English and Spanish and lets users:
— Follow Pope Francis with the latest news and communications, including videos and photos.
— Access unique mobile features to view daily readings, make mobile donations, receive news alerts, get Vatican and Catholic News Service updates, including videos and photos.
The app also will offer up-to-the minute coverage of Pope Francis as he addresses a joint meeting of Congress in Washington on September 24, the United Nations in New York on September 25 and the Festival of Families during the World Meeting of Families in Philadelphia on September 26.
New parish and diocese functionality will be released for the app in October. Users can stay in contact with local dioceses and parishes through individual pages that will have Mass and confession times, homilies, events, blog posts, videos and bulletins. Users also will be able to locate local parishes at home or when traveling with a “Church Finder” tool that works by location, city, state or ZIP code.
“This is the first Pope to address (both) Congress and the United Nations,” Bishop Coyne said. “It’s truly a historic moment for the Pope, and the USA Catholic Church app will provide news and coverage that people simply can’t get anywhere else.”
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