If you are like me, you want to learn as much as you can about the Catholic Faith. But sometimes there is a small issue of money. There are so many great resources, apostolates, and teachers out there that is hard to spread our hard-earned dollars around. However, there are many resources available to help you learn the faith at no charge. The following are five that I have used personally and can vouch for.
1. The Knights of Columbus
Yes, the Knights of Columbus. Some Catholics are unaware that the Knights of Columbus owns and operates Catholic Information Services. There are paid courses available, but they also have three free courses available to the general public. Are you investigating what the Catholic Church believes? There is a free course for that.
The Luke E. Hart course is a thirty-lesson course that takes you through the Catechism. In these courses there are booklets available that you can download or print to study as you see fit. Check it out at www.kofc.org/un/en/cis/
2. Pillars of Catholicism
A few years ago, John Paul the Great Catholic University in Escondido put together a series of thirteen videos and titled it “Pillars of Catholicism.” The videos are taught by Dr. Michael Barber, Dr. Christine Wood, and Fr. Andy Younan. The videos range from Christology, natural philosophy, the Trinity, and the Eucharist. They are great and informative, and they are free. There are also quizzes at the end to help you apply the learning. Check it out at www.pillarsofcatholicism.com/
3. The Vatican
It should come as no shock that the Vatican website is a literal treasure of information about the Catholic Faith. You can read the encyclicals of Pope Francis, or you can scroll through past Popes and read their biography and encyclicals. On the bottom right hand corner is a link titled “resource center”. That link will provide you with a link to the entire Bible, Catechism, Code of Canon Law, and ever Ecumenical council. And yes, it is all free. Here is the link w2.vatican.va/content/vatican/en.html
4. Catholic Answers
The institution has a popular radio show and podcasts, but the website is phenomenal (and always improving). They have plenty of material that you can purchase, and they have so much that is also free. When visiting the website the “Ask Questions’ box is prominent. Type in whatever topic that you want to learn more about, and the website will deliver free content for your search. You can visit their website at www.catholic.com.
5. St. Paul Center
Scott Hahn was a big impact in my conversion process. His objections were my objections and he has a way of communicating that is easy for many to understand. His apostolate, The St. Paul Center, has several amazing resources to assist with understanding various parts of the faith. As with many sites, there are things on there that are only available by purchasing. However, if you click on “studies and tools” and scroll down to “online studies” you will discover a free goldmine. There are online courses on Mary, the Mass, covenants, and biblical worldview. The Bible is the primary text, and though the accompanying books by Dr. Hahn are recommended, they are not required. Check out the website at www.stpaulcenter.com/.
This is by no means an all-inclusive list. There are several Catholic ministries that have free resources to assist in understanding the faith. The objective of listing these five is to give you various options of resources to equip in growing as a follower of Christ. These resources are a good start to equip you in being a soldier for Christ. Have fun learning!