Scratching your head over what to do for Lent?  How about setting your mobile devices to stop bothering you so much! This year you may want to think about making good, old-fashioned silence an integral part of your Lenten experience.  Pope Francis, in reflecting on the importance of silence, noted that God’s plan of salvation always includes moments of mystery and quiet.

silent phone case

“Silence is really the ‘cloud’ that covers the mystery of our relationship with the Lord, our holiness and our sins,” he said in his homily a couple years ago. “We cannot explain this mystery, but where there is no silence in our lives, the mystery is lost, it goes away. Guard the mystery with silence!”

That’s difficult to achieve when the phone rings us out of our “happy place” or Facebook or Twitter bleats another post. Let’s look at options out there to help carve out precious times of silence. First, choose hours that you absolutely don’t want your silent world disturbed. Then, go on the offense.

Here we turn to the experts at Techlicious in which Suzanne Kantra outlines simple actions you can take to program your phone into silence using its built-in Do Not Disturb setting.

For Apple devices, there’s a Do Not Disturb feature built right into iOS 8. Simply schedule the hours you don’t want to be disturbed, and you won’t hear a peep (except your alarm; that will always sound). You can allow calls from specific people regardless of the hour and enable calls to ring through if there’s a second call from the same person within three minutes.

Android users with phones running Lollipop 5.0 or later come with a feature called Do Not Disturb, accessed through the phone’s device settings > sounds and notifications. With Do Not Disturb, you can schedule hours when you won’t accept calls or notifications and allow specific contacts to reach you any time. Motorola’s Moto app, which comes preloaded on the Moto X and Moto G, offers the same sleep scheduling features. For the same functionality on older Android devices, try the Agent app (free on Google Play).

Windows Phone users get all of the controls of iOS and Android Do Not Disturb through Cortana’s Notebook, which you can find by selecting search to access Cortana and selecting Cortana’s Notebook > Quiet hours . Plus, you can adjust your quiet hours based on days of the week — a huge bonus for anyone who enjoys sleeping in on the weekends.

Ok, but what if you want to program your phone to automatically shut down once you enter a certain location? That’s where a geo-locator program comes in.

mutebylocationMute by Location ($1.99) AppleAndroid  This app allows you to set the volume of your ringtone/vibration alarm based on locations you set. On the map, select a church or Adoration chapel, for example, and adjust the range and loudness of ring. Remember, while a great help, geo-locator apps are notoriously inconsistent in their effectiveness. Just a warning.

silent phone caseFinally, for an old-school reminder, how about changing out your phone case to something that will remind you each time you pick it up? Check out this cool phone case for Apple and Galaxy phones. ($25 in slim or protective styles).

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Categories: Blog for Catholic Apptitude

Author:Jennifer Kane

Content Evangelist, Jennifer Kane, is a secular Carmelite (OCDS), wife, mother, grandmother who worked for more than 30 years in marketing/communications which included 20 years in radio broadcasting including news director. She holds degrees in Journalism/Communication (BA) and English (MA) from St. Bonaventure University. In 2016 she authored the Vatican application for minor basilica status for The Basilica of St. Mary of the Angels in Olean, New York. Pope Francis granted that title in 2017. Research on the basilica formed the basis of her history book, A Place Set Apart. She previously authored the book, A Worthy and Capable Clergyman, the second part of the history book in a slightly different format. She is founder and editor of the website,, the #1 English language website cataloging/reviewing Catholic apps for mobile devices.

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