CHICAGO — Hallow, the No. 1 Catholic prayer and meditation app in the world, has launched a Spanish version of its app, Hallow Español, with a wide array of content exclusively for Hispanic Catholics.
The app, available in all Spanish-speaking countries and in the U.S., “aims to help Hispanic Catholics deepen their faith,” said a news release.
“As the percentage of all U.S. Catholics who are Hispanic increases, with one-third — 33% — of all U.S. Catholic adults identifying as Hispanic, the Catholic Church has focused more on providing resources and programs that appeal to its Spanish-speaking parishioners,” it said.
“Technology has increasingly played a key role in reaching Hispanic Catholics,” the release added. “But there hasn’t been a Catholic app that provides for them — until now.”
“With over 1.7 million downloads, Hallow has become an essential resource for prayer and meditation in the English-speaking world,” Jaime Gil, Hallow’s team leader for Spanish content, said in a statement. “As we move forward with our vision to have millions of people praying every day, we are excited to make the same quality content available in Spanish.”
A 14-day trial of Hallow Español is available. Information to sign up for the trial can be found at www.hallow.com.
Those who have the English edition of the app can change the language to Spanish and all the Spanish prayers and meditations will appear.
“Spanish is not only spoken in 21 countries in the Americas, Spain and other parts of the world,” Gil said, “but it is also the second most common language spoken in the United States. With Hallow Español, we believe that God will continue to hallow the lives of many millions more around the world.”
Hallow Español’s original content is tailored specifically for a Hispanic audience and will be continuously updated throughout the liturgical year.
For its official launch in December that content included the Our Lady of Guadalupe Novena, a Las Posadas Community Challenge and special meditations for Día de los Reyes Magos (the feast of Epiphany).
Hallow, which has received more than 40,000 five-star reviews, is available in the Apple App Store, Google Play Store and Amazon App Store.
Over the past year, Hallow has added many faith leaders to the app, including Los Angeles Auxiliary Bishop Robert E. Barron, founder of Word on Fire media ministry; Father Mike Schmitz, a priest of the Diocese of Duluth, Minnesota, who is co-creator of “The Bible in a Year” daily podcast; Scott Hahn, founder and president of the St. Paul Center for Biblical Theology in Steubenville, Ohio; Leah Darrow, Catholic wife and mother, author and podcast host; and Sister Miriam James Heidland, a member of the Society of Our Lady of the Most Holy Trinity, who is a sought-after speaker at youth conferences.
Hallow also has formed a new board of advisers, led by Bishop Kevin C. Rhoades of Fort Wayne-South Bend, Indiana, who is the immediate past chairman of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Committee on Doctrine.
Hallow tries to be “an app that helps you disconnect from apps and technology,” according to its CEO and co-founder, Alex Jones.
That sounds like a contradiction, he admitted in a 2020 interview with Catholic News Service.
But while other religious apps have users glued to their screen to read the Bible, he explained, Hallow allows its users to press “play,” close their eyes and listen to audio of a prayer.
Users are encouraged to build a habit of prayer by spending at least one minute in guided prayer with Hallow each day.
“The hardest part about praying is just doing it,” Jones told CNS. “It’s easy in the seasons of Lent and Advent when it’s top of mind, but (other times of the year) when you’ve got a lot of other things going on, it’s easy to fall off that.”
The app allows users to set goals and “you can add members of your family and friends to the app to hold yourself accountable,” he said. “You can set daily reminders.”