Noticias de la Diócesis de Allentown

Old-fashioned family values? There’s an app for that

Catholic education, good old-fashioned family values and the latest technology come together in a new smartphone app designed by students at Immaculate Conception Academy in Douglassville.

The “My Pantry” software application won its inventors an award from their local congressmen. Now they’ll be going to the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C. to show off their work at a gathering of other congressional award winners from across the nation.

The inventors are members of the school’s new club that stresses skills in science, technology, engineering and mathematics, commonly called STEM.

“My Pantry” saves time and money. It also prevents food waste by keeping track of the ingredients you have on hand, reminding you of expiration dates, and suggesting recipes to use the things in your fridge and on your shelves before they go bad. It even counts calories.

Best of all, said Deb Petras, advancement director at the school, using the app can mean more free time to spend with family.

“The students really focused on tying this into creating more family time,” she said.

“If you don’t have to run to the store for last-minute ingredients, you are more organized and have more time to sit down as a family, say grace and eat dinner together.”

Family values, said Petras, are stressed at Immaculate Conception Academy as an important part of a well-rounded Catholic school education.

“Because We Are Catholic” tells the stories of how the people of the Diocese of Allentown make a difference in the lives of others, bringing the Light of Christ to each other and to our community. Videos of people in the series are available on the diocesan website at