Answers 4 Catholics App – Apologetics on Hand

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When my doorbell rings, I typically know the source:

* UPS (or any derivative of a delivery service)

* Peapod

* The Jehovah Witnesses (JW)

One particular Monday morning, it was the latter. Two sweet elderly Witnesses (as I recently learned is the preferred moniker), were standing at my front door.  Years ago I would have pretended I wasn’t home, and hidden out of sight until they left, but now I look forward to these visits.

The conversation began well enough with the usual offer of literature and pleasantries, but quickly escalated to an engaging, though sometimes terse, faith exchange.  One of the women had a cane, there were a few times in our discourse that I wondered if she was fixin’ to use it to set me straight or knock some sense into me, as she shook it in the air with great conviction.

old-italian-ladies

It was the first time my attempt to share my faith with a visiting Witness was met with opposition; usually they just smile, nod, thank me for my sharing, and leave.  I am so excited that these two obviously seasoned door to door evangelizers felt the need to enlighten me.  Though they might be disappointed to learn that our discussion only taught me what rebuttals I required to have a better understanding of for the next time someone comes a’knockin.

In case you are curious, we discussed our differing beliefs on Jesus and St. Michael being the same person (they are not), the impossible existence of an idea of a Trinity (it is not only possible but true — some mysteries are not to be solved but taken in faith), and that the devil as a god (he’s not, he is only an angel holding only the powers of an angel – not omnipotent nor omnipresent).

I see no harm in evangelizing the visiting evangelizer. Call me crazy, but I think if you come to my door for the purpose of sharing your faith, you should be prepared to hear about mine as well.

“Godcidentally” (as nothing is coincidental in my mind), shortly after this exchange, I was introduced to the A4C (Answers 4 Catholics) app.   A4C is an app for learning more about the Catholic faith, and is especially helpful for the purpose of Apologetics.

Nope, it is not apologizing for what we believe – though, true story, I thought that was what the word meant when I first heard it. It is making a defense for and expressing what the Catholic Church truly believes and teaches.

I was very excited to discover the A4C App had a section answering some of the very points my JW friends made at my door.   The app not only prepared me for some points that had not come up but also happily validated my correct understanding of some of the things that had.

Although the A4C video tutorials (I’ve embedded 1 of the 2 below) are from February 2011, I found them incredibly helpful in not only understanding what the app does but how I can best utilize it.

[youtube_sc url=”https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5q1YoxcN_Qs”]

Video link

A4c

Features:

∞  Categories – A wide variety of topics pertaining to learning and defending the Catholic faith.

∞  Media – Video and Audio resources for many of the areas covered under Categories.

∞  News – Blogs (*please note the link for “Fr. Baron” is a misspelling. It does indeed refer to Fr. Robert Barron’s Word on Fire and Catholicism); news outlets; podcasts and YouTube.  According to the tutorial video these links are updated often in order to keep them current – and unlike the other sections does require an internet connection to utilize.

While I did discover a few broken links and misspellings, my overall opinion of the A4C app is very favorable. I think it fulfills its goal for offering tools for studying and sharing the Catholic Faith.

Answers 4 Catholics (A4C) provides a plethora of good and useful insights and information, this free download is definitely worth checking out!

Read more of our Tech Talk columns.

Copyright 2014, Allison Gingras

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About Author

Allison Gingras, founder www.ReconciledToYou.com; and host of A Seeking Heart on Real Life Radio weekdays 10 am ET and Catholic 24/7 on Radio Cor Mariae Wed. 7 pm. Allison created the "Words with" daily devotional App Series: Words with Jesus and Words with Mary. Allison offers retreats and presentations: Seeking Faith Series, the Blessed Mother and Technology & Evangelization.

3 Comments

  1. I recently purchased an iPad for my ministry and think this app would be a good addition to the digital reference library. My brief impression of it, based on reviews,etc. is that for many, this reference tool serves as an apolgetics for Catholics dealing with other Christians. I am used to either working with Inquirers for RCIA or doing sacramental preparation with catholic parents.
    I often forget the myriad of grey areas (and even hostility) that exist between denominations or antipathy toward Catholics. But it is interesting to me as someone trained in Mission and Cross Cultural Studies, that this app doesn’t seem to be conceived within the context of ecumenism, which I would hope would be less confrontational between denominations. I also wonder how open it is to discussing contemporary issues: married priests, for example.
    Any way, I’m curious enough to add it. One last note, for some who I prepared in the RCIA for making their Profession of Faith, (i.e. Welcomed into full communion from another Christian denomination) they grabbed on into this apt. Perhaps because it helped them in their interactions as new Catholics with other denominations, perhaps because it’s one-stop style was similar and familiar to the solo scriptura of their previous Christian lives. But I lamented a bit, when the app replaced dialogue we would have at our regular meetings. Instead it all became: “You can just look it up on the apt.” Whereas my approach had urged them to come celebrate the Mass as the common reference point to unlocking/understanding the bedrock of Catholic life…where most Catholics come to be fed.

  2. Jay, I see your point on ecumenism, what I read at least on this App, was all very respectful of other beliefs while remaining true to the primary function of the App, which is Apologetics (aka providing a defense of the faith). I also lament with you when Apps replace discussion – they should inspire conversations both with each other and with God not eradicate it. Thank you so much for taking the time to post your very thoughtful comments. God Bless!

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