Political election season in the United States has officially begun. Let’s take a look at couple of free mobile apps designed to help U.S. Catholics not only make informed decisions before entering the voting booth, but learn about ways they can become involved in political issues within the country.
By our baptism, Catholics are committed to following Jesus Christ and to be “salt for the earth, light for the nations.” As the Catechism of the Catholic Church reminds us, “It is necessary that all participate, according to his position and role, in promoting the common good. This is inherent in the dignity of the human person … As far as possible citizens should take an active part in public life” [USCCB Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship.
The CatholicVote (Free) iOS and Android-For Catholics in the United States. This app gives you a new way to let your voice be heard in politics. Receive CatholicVote Action Alerts instantly on your smartphone. Contact your Representatives in Washington directly through your mobile device. Don’t know who your representatives are? No problem. There’s a look-up feature right in the app that serves up all points of contact including the representative’s Twitter and Facebook accounts. CatholicVote has relevance beyond the election season as it includes blog posts from its stable of competent contributors on its web site of the same name. Commentary focuses on matters dealing with faith and culture. Of interest are running polling data and commentary on Catholic voter support of various candidates and issues.
From the Developer: “CatholicVote is lay movement, foremost, of committed Catholics who are passionate about living out the truths proclaimed by Christ and His Church in the modern world. CatholicVote is also a community of patriotic Americans who believe our nation’s founding principles are good and true, and worth fighting for. Using the latest techonology, Catholic Vote Mobile will help mobilize and unify the Catholic voting community.”
As of this posting, the app is running with some bugs on our iPhone (video and representatives listing not working), but we are confident those issues will be fixed soon.
Catholic Voting Guide (Free) iOS and Android – Parish priests and deacons of the Confraternity of Catholic Clergy have formulated this non-partisan guide meant to be a tool to help voters make an intelligent decision on Election Day informed by faith and reason.
From developers: “This application helps you cast a responsible vote using a well-formed conscience based on Catholic moral principles. Six Vital Issues that every citizen should weigh in casting their ballot are: RIGHT TO LIFE; FREEDOM OF RELIGION (religious liberty); SANCTITY OF MARRIAGE; PRIVATE PROPERTY; ACCESS TO ESSENTIAL GOODS; WAR & PEACE. Using the USCCB Letter “Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship” and the CDF Letter “Worthiness to Receive Holy Communion” as a foundation, this Catholic Voting Guide is designed to identify, clarify and prioritize fundamental non-negotiable values that affect every citizen and every human being. The CCC is a national association dedication to ongoing spiritual, theological and pastoral formation of its members in a fraternal setting to enable those in Holy Orders (loyal to the Magisterium) to better serve the Catholic faithful. ”
As the screen shot illustrates, the app conveniently labels the essential issues outlined above. Select an icon to reveal text of the official position of the Catholic Church on each of the issues.