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YouVersion Bible App Founded By Oklahoma Church

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Bobby Gruenewald, You Version Bible App founder, with Pope Francis. Bobby Gruenewald, You Version Bible App founder, with Pope Francis.
TULSA, Oklahoma -

It shouldn't come as a surprise that one of the most popular Bible apps for smart phones has roots in the Bible Belt.  A few Oklahomans developed an app that's seen millions of downloads since it started in 2008. 

A man who has been photographed handing Pope Francis an iPhone must have some big connections around the world. 

Bobby Gruenewald is a pastor and innovation leader at LifeChurch in Edmond, but he did something for people who want to read the Bible no matter where they are.  

He founded the YouVersion Bible App

"Most people would have expected the Bible App to come out of a group in Silicon Valley or maybe one of the big publishers up in New York," said Bobby Gruenewald, You Version Bible App founder. 

"But for whatever reason, God chose to use a church from Oklahoma."

The app wasn't developed in New York or California - but by a handful of people from the heartland.

"I was just trying to find a way to have technology help me read the Bible better and little did I know what was God was going to do with it," Gruenewald said.

Aside from the different versions of the Bible - the app allows you to read it in more than 1,000 different languages. 
And those languages are being read and listened to around the world. 

More than 265 million people have downloaded the app. Not just to read the Bible - but to share their experience with it. 

"We do have a verse of the day that a lot of people use to kind of share images on Instagram, post to social media," said Bobby Gruenewald, Edmond pastor.

The app has been around for nine years - and Gruenewald says a new feature will launch this year. 

"The ability to actually do a reading plan with friends where you can basically do the exact same plan together, the same devotional, and kind of track each day - day by day - with each other," he said.

So not only is Gruenewald making big connections around the world, he's helping others do so as well.    

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