It is  has become widely known that religion is on the decline in the most affluent countries. and this decline shows no signs of changing. So it makes sense that various religious institutions have made great efforts to rejuvenate memberships. Churches and religious organizations have done everything from offering more convenient service times, to more comfortable seating to rock bands in place of choirs to liberalizing their policies and being more accepting of alternate views and lifestyles in an effort to try and bring people back the fold.

The latest attempt to reach out is an app called Sindr. Bearing a name similar to a widely popular dating app its purpose is to locate nearby confessionals. A clever attempt to reach a younger generation of Catholics and make it easier to practice their religion. Especially smart when one considers that it is the younger generation that is practicing religion the least and as such the app makes sense if your goal is to rejuvenate dwindling numbers.

Confessions are OK in the sense that it feels good to express what you feel guilty about and get a sense of forgiveness after the penance.  The trouble lies is what religions like Catholicism can make you feel guilty about, which is a lot. Here is a short list of sins or if that’s not convincing that the bible is relentless in its ability to guilt a person here is a list of well over 600 sins. The bible even goes far as to say we are born in sin, we are sinners by default. ‘for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, ‘ Romans 3:23. Indeed it is a demoralizing belief system for which you must constantly work to gain God’s approval. As such this app is a merely a modern way to propagate a system of guilt from which, unless you let go of the faith, there is no escape.

The app itself is mostly harmless but the belief system it is promoting is not. However if numbers continue to their current trend it may well be too late for Catholicism, and religion in general, in affluent countries and so apps like this can safely be viewed as desperate and laughable. In fact, I confess, I laughed. I even thought of a great tagline ‘Tired of Tinder but still feeling sinful? Try Sindr!’



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