This is a great time for learning the Catholic faith, both for those interested in exploring what Catholics believe and for Catholics to deepen their own knowledge and understanding. In addition to the resources of the parish, books and Catholic media — the Internet is rich in quality content. It has been, and continues to be, very helpful to me. Sometimes I am just looking for an answer and other times just soaking it in.
A few words of caution are in order. Mixed in with the real gems are those who preach, out of ignorance or purposely, against the teachings of the Church. It is not safe to assume that a website speaks the truth simply because it has “Catholic” in its name. There are obvious groups such as “Catholics for Choice,” “Gay Catholic Forum,” “Roman Catholic Womenpriests” plus other less obvious groups who dispute core, infallible facts and settled truths. In time these heretical and schismatic groups, like the devil himself, will surely fail.
And so I say to you, you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church, and the gates of the netherworld shall not prevail against it.
From time-to-time I hope to bring some Internet resources to your attention that I have found to be trustworthy and invaluable. One of my very favorite websites is Catholic Answers (Catholic.com). Catholic Answers is really a “mega” website combining several useful elements:
- A library of excellent articles
- Radio shows (live online and archived)
- This Rock magazine (back issues are online)
- Discussion forums
I particularly enjoy the discussion forums and so do a lot of other folks! They were visited over a million times last month alone. All together, there are over 20 million pages of archived discussions. CAF (Catholic Answers Forums – forums.Catholic.com) is the largest discussion community out there. It is organized into a dozen different areas with sub-forums in most.
Everyone is welcome, Catholic or not, as long as respect is shown. You often see those in consecrated life participating (I have read that the staff vets those claiming religious titles).
One forum is different than the others – Ask an Apologist. In this moderated forum, a small number of very knowledgeable apologists respond factually to submitted questions. Sometimes docents respond to questions which were previously answered. The apologists include many well known names: Fr. Vincent Serpa, Michelle Arnold, Peggy Frye, Jim Blackburn, Jan Wakelin, Jimmy Akin, and Karl Keating. AAA is a reliable place to get answers on Church teachings.