The folks over at FutureSoft who produced the Truth and Life Audio Bible have packaged their biblical offerings into a cool daily guide to help you read the four Gospels throughout Lent on iOS, Adroid, Kindle Fire and Nook.
Here’s what you get for FREE:
* entire text of RSV-CE …the entire bible with search features and the ability to choose verses and highlight text
* Audio “radio drama” reading of Gospel of Mark complete with sound effects and music
* Scripture study lecture (audio/video) for Gospel of Mark and Luke
* Daily guide for reading the entire New Testament within 40 days
* Daily guide for reading all four Gospels in 46 days during Lent (beginning on Ash Wednesday and ending on Holy Saturday)
There are several other significant features to this app (most of them FREE), but I want to focus on its Lenten reading guide that is so good it is being integrated into the Archdiocese of Chicago’s plan to encourage Catholics to read all four Gospels through Lent. True, not everyone has access to this technology, but it is a terrific tool to help Catholics achieve that goal. Kudos to the Archdiocese for offering this option in this tech-savy age.
To begin with, the app guide does not recommend the traditional Matthew, Mark, Luke and John order of reading. Instead it opens with Mark followed by Luke, Matthew and John. Much easier to follow the flow of the text/content in that order, as many scripture scholars recommend for the casual reader. Daily reading is broken down into about two chapters per day. The Archdiocese of Chicago translates that into 15 minutes a day during Lent–“This year don’t give up; rather give time to God,” reads its suggested bulletin announcement.
The additional feature of audio available in this app is nice to use if one is driving or working out. And it isn’t just somebody reading the text. We’re talking professionally produced radio drama readings– studio quality recordings complete with sound effects and music, all synchronized to the text you scroll through in the app. I envision families turning down the lights and listening to the dramatic audio each evening before the kids go to bed. I remember fondly my dad playing old-time radio programs for us before we went to bed. Create memories with your loved ones this Lenten season!
Keep in mind that there is a commercial element to this app. The developers sell the audio for the remaining Gospels for $19.99. The audio for the remaining books in the New Testament are $1.99 ea. So while the text of the entire Bible is free, the audio is only available for one book, Mark.
Also, this app requires registration to even get into it. They want email address and password. Some people don’t like to have to register and log in to use their apps.
Finally, this app carries an Imprimatur from the Vatican and is integrated (linked) into other commercial offerings from Lighthouse Catholic Media and EWTN. So it’s legit Catholic.
Every Catholic family should have a Catholic bible. Perhaps this Lenten challenge will encourage families to purchase one or at least take their dusty bible off the shelf. Electronic bibles are convenient, and there are many free versions of Catholic bibles on line and via other apps (catalogued in this website).
Download soon. The challenge begins March 5th!
editor, Catholic Apptitude