Social Media Reacts to Pope Benedict Resigning; 5 Catholic Apps for the Faithful

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By Vittorio Hernandez | February 12, 2013 10:55 AM EST

The world was caught by surprise when Pope Benedict XVI decided to step down as the Catholic Church leader. User from social media such as Facebook and Twitter were stunned by this unexpected move from the Pope which he announced on Monday.

The Twitter page of Pope Benedict XVI has more than 1.5 million followers and there are 34 tweets posted. The Pontifex has posted tweets on topics such as God's gift, the Virgin Mary, following Christ, meaning of Sunday, and loving others.

News sources on Twitter posted the update about this shocking event and many users expressed confusion over what is going on and why the pope has to resign. Other users have also asked if the pontiff can resign since many believe that the position is a service till death.

In Facebook, one of the earliest comments posted about the announcement is "Hacked??" Some users have changed their profile picture using the image of Pope Benedict to show their affection and with the hope that he reconsiders his decision. Other comments include: "Will pray for Pope Benedict and his successor," "sad", and "I am heartbroken at the news. I looked up to Pope Benedict as a spiritual father, and his witness to Christ made me the man I am today."

The instant posting of the news and reactions indicate that many Catholics are keeping up with the times through information technology, particularly the use of social media. Tech companies are not left behind and have developed some apps for the Catholic faithful such as the following:

1.     Laudaten

A comprehensive Catholic app available in several different languages featuring the stations of the cross, Latin prayers, personalised prayers, Catholic media, catechism and the rosary.

2.     Catholic Droid

Even though Android is the program, it seems this app can represent sympathy from the OS. The app includes the Bible in many translations, the Ten Commandments, the rosary, Commandments of the Church, Sacraments, Prayers, and the Gifts of the Holy Spirit.

3.     iMissal

This app has been granted an official Imprimatur or license to publish from the Catholic Church featuring the Mass readings, liturgical calendar, and videos from CatholicTV.com, Daily Bread, and Catholic News Feed.

4.     Confession: Roman Catholic App

From Little i Apps, LLC, it is designed to be used in aid by penitents. The text within the app was developed in collaboration with Rev. Thomas G Weinandy, and Rev. Dan Scheidt. It features customised examination of conscience based on age, sex, and vocation, multiple account users with password protection, additional sins which are not listed, confession walkthrough, and 6 different Acts of Contrition.

5.     Divine Office

This is considered to be the best Catholic iPhone and iPad app which is now available for Android devices. This app focuses on the Liturgy of the Hours including Invitatory, Office of Readings, Morning Prayer, Daytime Prayer, Evening Prayer, and Night Prayer.

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