You may not have heard of Ryan Kreager before, but I have no doubt you have heard of his work. He's one of the forces behind the awesomesauce known as Little i Apps. A few of his biggest projects have included:
- Rediscover: (http://rediscoverapp.com/)
- Missio (http://www.littleiapps.com/
mobileapps/first-mobile-app-) to-be-launched-by-pope-from- vatican/
- Notre Dame Daily Faith (http://campusministry.nd.edu/
- eVotions (http://www.littleiapps.com/
- Confession: A Roman Catholic App (http://www.littleiapps.com/
- My Year of Faith (http://littleiapps.com/myof/)
Did I mention those are just a few of the projects Ryan's been involved in?
I've actually talked to Ryan on the phone. It turns out that he's pretty funny, pretty down-to-earth, and he likes to read. What's not to love?
So allow me to introduce you to today's Catholic Techie, Ryan Kreager.
Tell us about yourself in five words or less.
Catholic Technology Evangelist.
Of your pursuits, what's your favorite?
My favorite is a system we are currently building. It doesn't have an official name yet, but the 60-second preview goes like this:
The 'ultimate parish mission statement' is already written in Matthew 28:19: "Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations..." Parishes need a system for reaching out to the churched and non-churched, meeting them where they are, and connecting them to community, faith, and discipleship. We should be helping each person be better today than yesterday, closer to God today than yesterday.
Parishes also have to deal with a lot of 'stuff' - directories, scheduling, communications, etc. They need a system that handles this stuff seamlessly so they can focus their efforts on boldly proclaiming the Gospel through evangelization and discipleship. If you do the 'stuff' piece right, you can do great things to empower people in their faith.
We are building a system that does all this. Technology that 'just works', freeing people for the fundamental experience of faith - our encounter with Christ.
When you think of the New Evangelization from your approach as a "Catholic Techie," what excites you? What makes you want to continue?
There are so many good people working on the New Evangelization! Every week we meet or hear about a new project, a beautiful or wise or clever way that people are using technology in evangelization. When you see someone using all their gifts and creativity to show just how GOOD to the Good News is, it's infectious.
What's the most rewarding aspect of your work?
The stories we hear from people using our apps. Seeing Missio users in China who are getting news about the Catholic church is awesome; the same goes for developing nations where computers are rare but Android devices are becoming common.
The best story we've received probably happened right after Confession launched. We heard from a gentlemen in London who had been away from the sacraments for 20 years. He had been afraid to go to confession for a lot of reasons, not least of which is he had no idea what to say or how to go. He used our app and went to confession for the first time since he was in college - we all got chills just hearing about it!
In your spare time, what are we likely to find you doing? Do you have a gadget in hand or do you go native and screenless?
Both are equally likely. I love building and fixing our home, but lately my son and I have been playing a lot of Plants vs. Zombies 2. :)
Want more Catholic Techie interviews? Here you go.
Copyright 2013 Sarah Reinhard
About the Author
When she’s not chasing kids, chugging coffee, or juggling work, Sarah Reinhard’s usually trying to stay up read just one…more…chapter. She writes and works in the midst of rural farm life with little ones underfoot. She is part of the team for the award-winning Catholic Mom’s Prayer Companion, as well as the author of a number of books. You can join her for a weekday take on Catholic life by subscribing to Three Shots and follow her writing at Snoring Scholar.