Faced with the prospect of ever-decreasing popularity, the old religions are starting to take serious measures in order to catch up. Taking some cues from the world’s fastest growing religion, Consumerism^, the Catholic Church has launched a promising new product.
“SalveAtion is one part virtual church and one part shop”, declared father Pepe Monezi, archcoder of the application. “We’re streaming an ever-increasing number of sermons. Faithful Catholics will receive in-app currency when sharing religious content on popular social networks or when convincing their friends or relatives to join our religion. The app also provides an instant baptism service. All you need is to do is say ‘Hello Salvation, please christen me’. Converting has never been easier.”
The Church’s newly established Digital Deliverance department is in charge with developing the application under the leadership of archbishop Dominicus Panteos. We asked the archbishop for more details about the in-app currency:
“Our digital currency is the innoCent. The faithful will be able to gather innoCents by doing good deeds, listening and sharing sermons and convincing others to install SalveAtion and baptize themselves. Of course, innoCents can also be purchased with real money.”
Naturally, we became curious what can be purchased with innoCents via the application. Sure enough, the Catholic Church seems well prepared for bringing itself in the third millennium and has provided us with a list of services the faithful can enjoy, along with an example voice command that can optionally be used to activate said functionality.
- “Hello Salvation, Washy my sins” begins an online confession with Washy, a virtual priest with a library of more than 2000 soothing phrases and 300 inventive suggestions for acts of contrition. The user needs at least 100 innoCents for the command to work. Otherwise, a “Be more innocent” error message will be spoken or displayed on screen.
- “Hello Salvation, lift me up” sends a request for a favorable mention during the prayer of the nearest local priest. Cost: 200.
- “I actually liked Benedict”. Cap with ex-Pope Benedict’s printed signature: 600.
- “Helpdesk my sins”. Online confession through our Helpdesk: 999.
- “Make me a bit pure”. Forgiveness of minor sin: 1500.
- “I like to show off”. Poster signed by a genuine Vatican priest: 2000.
- “Do me like in the church”. Online confession with a genuine priest: 3000.
- “I want to get stoned”. Pebble from the gardens of the Vatican (transport not included): 5000.
- “Make me really pure”. Forgiveness of major sin: 15000.
- “I need more fame”. Mention of your name in the monthly “May These Faithful Be Redeemed” public statement, available on the Vatican’s website: 18000.
- “Bling me up”. Flower bouquet from the gardens of the Vatican (transport not included, limited availability): 25000.
- “Put in a good word for me”. Favorable mention during prayer in a random church in Italy: 35000.
- “I ain’t no saint”. Submit your name for the monthly Virtual Canonization lottery. Winners’ e-mail addresses will be added in the application’s “Hall of Saints”. To add realism to the canonization, the user’s account will be purged from the database, so better do this when you have an exact number of innoCents. Cost: 52137.
- “Hello Pope”. Ask the Pope a question (answer not guaranteed): 82000.
- “Hello God”. Ask God a question (answer not guaranteed): 250500.
This text has been published in the “Satire” category for a good reason.