I downloaded the new Church of England app and here’s what I thought

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The Diocese of Blackburn are trying to gain more followers by expanding into the digital world through a mobile app.

The Church of England in Lancashire released a new app this week which already has thousands of downloads, so I had to see what the fuss was about.

The app, which is called ‘Fruitful’, allows people to read the Bible, be inspired in prayer and encourages users to respond in worship in a variety of ways.

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As I am not overly religious myself, I went into Fruitful with slight scepticism thinking that there wouldn’t be much in the app of interest to me.

However, I was definitely surprised at the amount of features Fruitful was able to offer.

Bishop Philip, Rev. Damian and Rev. Anne filming a promotion of the new 'Fruitful' app.Bishop Philip, Rev. Damian and Rev. Anne filming a promotion of the new 'Fruitful' app.
Bishop Philip, Rev. Damian and Rev. Anne filming a promotion of the new 'Fruitful' app.

Despite only being in the App Store and Google Play store for a matter of days, there seems to be an abundance of content already loaded on the app.

As soon as you open Fruitful, you are met with readings and podcasts for all ages as well as a Lent course from the Bishop of Blackburn, Philip North.

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As well as Bishop Philip’s Lent Course at launch the app features: 2024 Lent daily devotions, events and retreats, an online lectionary as well as an audio Bible.

I found the app’s interface easy to use and navigate with plenty of tabs along the bottom of the screen which clearly indicate what is in that section.

Whilst I might not be able to appreciate it as much as others, I especially liked the ‘Daily Prayer’ feature as users can pick from a range of prayers to read out for different occasions.

Logo of the new Church of England app 'Fruitful'.Logo of the new Church of England app 'Fruitful'.
Logo of the new Church of England app 'Fruitful'.

Speaking about the app, Rev. Damian, Vicar of Christ Church Thornton said: “Reaching so many downloads in the first week says a lot about the curiosity of Christians across Lancashire to know what this new thing is and their desire to pursue discipleship and to bear fruit for the Lord Jesus Christ.

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“I'm also excited at the prospect that some of the people are searching for meaning and hope in life and are using Fruitful as a way to discover for the first time who the Lord Jesus is.”

Fruitful comes alongside the Church’s attempt to expand more into a digital space after Bishops and Reverends have already made podcasts and featured in YouTube and Tik Tok videos.

While it is designed for all ages, ‘Fruitful’ is an attempt to appeal to a younger demographic and those who prefer to access information digitally rather than on paper.

So, whilst the app needs to be constantly updated in terms of content, I would recommend the app to those religious folk who wish to have Bible resources and prayers on the go.

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