Want to follow World Youth Day events in Poland from your mobile device July 25-31? Join in the spiritual journey as a digital pilgrim with three apps we have found in the past to be quite remarkable at providing information, schedules, live and on-demand video and timely news served on your smartphone or tablet. We add a new app to the list at the end because of its more spiritual take on following the road of the pilgrim.
EWTN TV and Radio (Free) Apple | Android | Kindle Fire will offer comprehensive coverage of World Youth Day beginning July 27 when Pope Francis arrives. Coverage begins at 9:30 am eastern time (US). This app is neat, clean and easy to navigate to find your programing wherever you live in the world. Enjoy live broadcasts of the major events on the schedule (on its home page) complete with translations and commentary. If you missed anything, EWTN broadcasts encore presentations of most major events from WYD within 24 hours. Better yet, the app offers “on demand” video and audio of WYD events which you can easily find in a special WYD icon. Check out their complete schedule of live and encore offerings. The app offers program schedules for its radio and tv broadcasts in several parts of the world in many languages. United States broadcasts are in your choice of English or Spanish.
Pope App (Free) Apple | Android This is your source for up-to-date (even live) content connecting you with all things papal at World Youth Day in Krakow, Poland. Because it’s the “Pope App,” we don’t expect non-papal events to factor into the offerings in this app. But you will get the meat and potatoes of the papal-related content in a variety of formats: Twitter feeds, news and text of speeches, galleries with the latest images and videos, access to his calendar, and links to other services of the Holy See along with video (live and on demand) of important events taking place like papal Mass, speeches, religious services. Get timely ALERTS and links to top stories and events so you will be assured of not missing anything. A great app to have handy to pick up all the latest official material coming out of the various venues which feature Pope Francis. 5 languages: English, French, Italian, Portuguese, Spanish. Requires internet service to run this app.
UPDATE Nothing on the “events” tab of this app as of July 27, so it does not appear that this app will cover World Youth Day other than offering occasional news articles.
If the coverage of Pope Francis’s visit to the U.S. is any indication of what we can expect from this app, you’ll want to be sure to download it, especially for the live video feeds that serve up English language translations and commentary. This is the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops’ all-inclusive Catholic Church App. As the title suggests, it attempts to cover the Church in the United States—extending to the Vatican—into one, single mobile resource. For World Youth Day information, navigate to the Events tab. It is unclear from looking at that section what exactly it will serve up. Live video? Streaming updates? Simple news text? We don’t know. But we do know it produced quality live video coverage of the Pope’s visit to the U.S. last year. Internet services needed to run most features.
Pilgrimage App (Free) Apple | Android This is a new app designed to serve both active pilgrims in Poland and virtual pilgrims as they journey spiritually together in their World Youth Day pilgrimage. Produced by the United States Bishops’ Conference in collaboration with American Bible Society, and the Catholic Apostolate Center, the Pilgrimage App is primarily a spiritual resource that guides you through the pilgrimage experience in getting you to engage your faith with activities such as setting goals, journaling, praying, reading a daily point of spiritual pilgrimage and reading/studying Scripture.
News and updates come in the form of photos and video from affiliated reporters on the ground. We are intrigued with the claim that it will offer 360-degree videos. Will this be true 360 video? We’ll see as we update this post.
You also get:
-Daily Mass Readings from the USCCB
-Ongoing spiritual formation after World Youth Day
-Reminders to Never Miss a Day
-In-App Commenting and Sharing
-Social media connections with Facebook, Twitter, and more
You will need to log in with a signup. Internet connection required.
Of course, the best pilgrimage occurs within the silence of your heart in a quiet place and time–wherever you are. So, do plan to power off that mobile device and listen to where the Lord is calling YOU.
Finally…Don’t forget your essential social media… #WYD2016, #USAPilgrim, #pilgrimageApp, #wydusa and Pope Emoji.