Phone-It-In Confession

SISTER BERNICE WOULD NOT APPROVE.

I imagine by now you’ve heard about the new $1.99 “Confession” iPhone app Catholics can get to keep track of their sins. I’m kind of Catholic; i.e., I’ve had plenty of first-hand experience with the confessional, although not for a long time because frankly I haven’t had any sins for a while.

I’d like to have some sins, but occasions of sin just never seem to present themselves anymore. Unless you count bad thoughts, but personally I never bought into that particular no-win-ology. Or unless neglecting things is a sin. I guess that would be the sin of sloth, but I wouldn’t need an app to keep count. I’d just tell the priest I’ve been sloth-afflicted every day for most of my adult life. Of course, then he might not give me absolution, because the whole point of the Sacrament of Penance is promising to go forth and sin no more, and any priest worth his collar would be suspicious of someone who’s been committing the same sin every day for years.

So you see, there’s really no reason for me to go to Confession and I certainly don’t need an app.

Anyway, Bishop Rhodes of the Catholic Diocese of Fort Wayne, Indiana, has given the Confession app his blessing, which must make it the first mobile app officially sanctioned by the Church ever. I hear it’s been selling well, too, which makes me wonder what kind of person needs a special tool to keep a handle on these things.

Is there a killer out there thinking, “Let’s see, did I kill just the one person last month?” Thieves don’t go to confession (they might have to give something back). People who covet their neighbor’s wife seldom think it’s wrong (unless you’re Jimmy Carter). And if you committed adultery more than a dozen times last year, you might as well throw yourself on the mercy of the College of Cardinals right now.

But I don’t care. If you think the Confession app will help you be a better person, $1.99 is a small price to pay. As for me, if I ever get the chance to commit a sin worth confessing, I’m not likely to forget it.

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