Vatican bans confession by iPhone

Vatican put its foot down Wednesday over the idea of "confessing" by iPhone.

Updated: Feb 10, 2011, 00:57 AM IST

Rome: The Vatican put its foot down Wednesday
over the idea of "confessing" by iPhone, after news that US
users can now download an application for the Apple gadget
that helps the faithful gain absolution.

"It is essential to understand that the rites of
penance require a personal dialogue between penitents and
their confessor... It cannot be replaced by a computer
application," Vatican spokesman Federico Lombardi told

"I must stress to avoid all ambiguity, under no
circumstance is it possible to `confess by iPhone`," he said.

"Confession: A Roman Catholic App," is the first
programme for the Apple devices created by a South Bend,
Indiana-based company called "Little iApps" and sells for 1.99
dollars (1.45 euros) on iTunes.

The app guides the faithful on their path to
confession by checking whether their behavior conforms to the
rules of the Scriptures with questions such as "have I been
involved in occult practices?"

Its developer, Patrick Leinen, said the app was
designed to be used in the confessional and was intended "for
those who frequent the sacrament and those who wish to

"Our desire is to invite Catholics to engage in their
faith through digital technology," Leinen said in a press
release on his website.