The modern tablet computer is the perfect tool in the hands of a pastor. Gadgets like Apple’s iPad offer great flexibility in carrying out the wide range of responsibilities that come along with the ministry. Here are 10 apps that a pastor should consider installing as soon as he gets an iPad.
Dropbox. There’s a good chance you already have this installed on your computer at home and/or in the office. Dropbox allows you to seamlessly share files across platforms. Once installed on your iPad, you have access to all your sermons, Bible studies, administrative resources and more. No need to remember to sync files before you leave the office.
Evernote. Similar to Dropbox in that it also synchronizes files across devices and between computers, but Evernote is much more convenient for taking quick notes and sorting them into useful categories. See my review here. (my review)
Accordance. This is currently my “go to” Bible app when I’m away from my desk. Other programs may have a more extensive library of books available, but I like Accordance’s agility and speed when it comes to things like Greek or Hebrew word searches.
Pastoral Care. A wonderfully handy collection of devotions, prayers and Bible readings for a multitude of ministry situations. With this app on your iPad or iPhone, you’ll never be caught unprepared to share words of comfort, no matter what the circumstance.
QuickOffice Pro. Although the glass screen of a tablet is not optimized for touch typing, there are times you simply need to work with documents while away from your main computer. QuickOffice helps you get the job done whether you’re working with Microsoft Word, Excel, or PowerPoint files. (But do consider purchasing a wireless keyboard for the best experience!)
GoodReader. I do a lot of reading on my iPad. Not just books (for which I prefer Amazon’s Kindle app), but especially PDFs from a variety of sources. Although there are a number of PDF readers (including Dropbox, Evernote, and QuickOffice listed above), GoodReader offers many more options for managing, reading and highlighting those files.
Keynote. Apple’s Keynote application is seen by many as superior to Microsoft’s PowerPoint in ease of use, flexibility and beautiful templates. This iOS version is only slightly pared down from the full computer app, but just as breath taking in design. You’ll have an impressive presentation put together and ready to show in no time, importing photos directly from your iPad or the internet. All you need to do is plug in to a projector — or hand the tablet around the room.
PrayNow. Pastors know how vital it is to feed their own souls with God’s Word even as they are called to nourish the faith of others. This app will dole out just enough Scripture each day to give a busy pastor plenty to chew on for his daily devotion time. Daily prayers and Bible readings from both Testaments are linked with selections from Christian writers of the past.
OmniFocus. Speaking of busy schedules, how do you keep everything organized? My tool of choice is OmniFocus which is probably the most feature-packed task manager available for the iPad but also among the most elegant. The premium price is worth it, in my opinion, for the Forecast view and built in Review function.
OmniOutliner. My new favorite application, I use OmniOutliner for everything from sermon preparation to five-year ministry plans. Just be warned that there’s a bit of a learning curve before you start to realize the app’s full potential.
To be sure, there are many other apps available on the iTunes store, but I have found these to be among the most useful in my ministry.