Check out these free catechisms and explanations of the Catholic Christian Faith, as indexed on the Catholic eBooks Project:

  • Baltimore Catechism, No. 1: or A Catechism of Christian Doctrine Prepared and Enjoined by Order of the Third Plenary Council of Baltimore Questions Numbered to Agree with “Explanation of the Baltimore Catechism” with Prayers and Hymns, No. 1 {For First Communion Classes}. With Imprimatur (1885). Available on Project Gutenberg and ManyBooks in multiple formats. May be downloaded in PDF format through the Saints’ Books index [This version of the Baltimore Catechism is abridged for younger students, according to Wikipedia.] Dogma, Morals.
  • Baltimore Catechism, No. 2: or A Catechism of Christian Doctrine Prepared and Enjoined by Order of the Third Plenary Council of Baltimore, Questions Numbered to Agree with “Explanation of the Baltimore Catechism” with Prayers and Hymns, No. 2 {For Confirmation Classes}. With Imprimatur (1885). Available on Project Gutenberg and ManyBooks in multiple formats. May be downloaded in PDF format through the Saints’ Books index, [NB: This is the main version of the Baltimore Catechism, according to Wikipedia.].
  • Baltimore Catechism, No. 3: or A Catechism of Christian Doctrine Prepared and Enjoined by Order of the Third Plenary Council of Baltimore (In Accordance with the New Canon Law), No. 3 (For Two Years’ Course for Post-Confirmation Classes), supplemented by Rev. Thomas L. Kinkead (New York, Boston, Cincinnati, Chicago, San Francisco: Benziger Brothers). With Imprimatur (1885). Available on Project Gutenberg and ManyBooks in multiple formats. May be downloaded in PDF format through the Saints’ Books index,
  • [NB: This is the version of the Baltimore Catechism that is expanded for older students, according to Wikipedia]. Dogma, Morals.
  • Baltimore Catechism, Nos. 1 to 3 may be downloaded as a single file here on Catholic Primer (e-text copyright 2005 by Catholic Primer).
  • Baltimore Catechism, No. 4: or An Explanation Of The Baltimore Catechism of Christian Doctrine For The Use of Sunday-School Teachers and Advanced Classes, by Thomas L. Kinkead (1891). With Imprimatur (1891 and 1921). Available on Project Gutenberg and ManyBooks in multiple formats. May be downloaded in PDF format through the Saints’ Books index, May also be read on Catholic Information Network. [NB: This is the version of the Baltimore Catechism that is annotated for teachers/catechists, according to Wikipedia and Catholic Information Network]
  • The Belief of Catholics, 2nd edition, by Ronald Knox. With Imprimatur. Available at EWTN Library.
  • Catechism: doctrinal, moral, historical, and liturgical: with answers to the objections drawn from the sciences against religion, by Patrick Power (Dublin: J. Duffy; London: Burns and Oates, 1905). With episcopal approbation. Available at Internet Archive and Open Library (Digitizing sponsor: MSN, Book contributor: Kelly Library, University of Toronto)
  • Catechism of St. Pope Pius X (ca. 1880). May be downloaded here on Catholic Primer (e-text copyright 2005 by Catholic Primer) and read online on the Catholic Information Network (copyright 1996 by James Akin. All Rights Reserved.)
  • Catechism made easy, a familiar explanation of the Catechism of Christian doctrine, Volume 1, by Henry Gibson (Liverpool: Rockliff Brothers, 1865). With Imprimatur. Available at Internet Archive. (Digitizing sponsor: Google, Book from the collections of: Oxford University)
  • Catechism made easy, a familiar explanation of the Catechism of Christian doctrine, 2nd ed., Volume 1, by Henry Gibson (Liverpool: Rockliff Brothers; London: Burns and Oates, 1882). With Imprimatur. Available at Internet Archive. (Digitizing sponsor: Google, Book from the collections of: Oxford University).
  • Catechism made easy, a familiar explanation of the Catechism of Christian doctrine, Volume 2, by Henry Gibson (Liverpool: Rockliff Brothers; London: R. Washbourne, 1874). With Imprimatur. Available at Internet Archive. (Digitizing sponsor: Google, Book from the collections of: Oxford University).
  • Catechism made easy, a familiar explanation of the Catechism of Christian doctrine, Volume 3, by Henry Gibson (Liverpool: Rockliff Brothers; London: R. Washbourne, 1877). With Imprimatur. Available at Internet Archive. (Digitizing sponsor: Google, Book from the collections of: Oxford University).
  • The catechism of Rodez explained in form of sermons; a work equally useful to the clergy, religious communities, and faithful, by Abbé Luche, curé of Montbazens, John Thein (St Louis, Mo.: B. Herder, 1898). With the episcopal recommendation of Bishop of Cleveland and the approbation of the Bishop of Rodez. Available on Open Library and  Internet Archive
  • Catechism of the Catholic Church, following the 1997 editio typica. May be read on the Saint Charles Borromeo Catholic Church website, with desktop and mobile formats and search engine; the Knights of Columbus website, with search engine; website of the Holy See; and the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops website.
  • Catechism of the Catholic Church, Simplified. May be read on CatholiCity (1996-2011, the Mary Foundation).
  • Catechism of the Council of Trent, or the Catechism for Parish Priests. May be downloaded here on Catholic Primer (e-text copyright 2005 by Catholic Primer); and may be read at Catechetics Online.
  • Catholic belief, by Joseph Faà Di Bruno (1878), Available at Internet Archive.
  • Catholic Common Sense, by Albert Power (Dublin: Catholic Truth Society of Ireland, 1947). Available on Lux Occulta (copyright status uncertain).
  • Catholic dogma: the fundamental truths of revealed religion (New York: E. & J.B. Young, 1892). Available at Internet Archive in multiple formats.
  • Catholic religion ; a statement of Christian teaching and history Charles Alfred Martin (St. Louis, Mo.: B. Herder, 1919). With imprimatur. Available at Open Library.and Internet Archive (Digitizing sponsor: MSN, Book contributor: Regis Library University of Toronto).
  • Christ in the Church; a volume of religious essays, Robert Hugh Benson (St. Louis, Mo., B. Herder, 1911). With Imprimatur. Available at Open Library and Internet Archive (Digitizing sponsor: University of Toronto, Book contributor: PIMS – University of Toronto)
  • Christian Doctrine, by Laurence Vaux, B.D. (Reprinted from an edition of 1583). Available at Catholic Apologetics Information  [NB: Catholic Apologetics Information, while it contains much that is extremely valuable, has an extremely negative view of the Second Vatican Council. It is not sedevacantist, but its view must be corrected in light of Pope Benedict XVI’s hermeneutics of continuity.]
  • The Commandments Explained, according to the teaching and doctrine of the Catholic Church, by Arthur Devine (London: R. & T. Washbourne; New York: Benziger, 1906). With Imprimatur. Available on Open Library and Internet Archive (Digitizing sponsor: MSN; Book contributor: Kelly Library, University of Toronto).
  • Compendium of the Catechism of the Catholic Church (Copyright 2005, Libreria Editrice Vaticana). May be read in multiple languages on the website of the Holy See.
  • The Creed Explained: or, An Exposition of Catholic Doctrine According to the Creeds of Faith and the Constitutions and Definitions of the Church, by Arthur Devine (London: R. T. Washbourne, 1903). With Imprimatur. Available on Open Library and Internet Archive (Digitizing sponsor: MSN; Book contributor: Kelly Library, University of Toronto).
  • Demonstration of Apostolic Preaching, by St. Irenaeus of Lyons. Available on Documenta Catholica Omnia.
  • Familiar Explanation of Christian Doctrine, by Rev. Michael Müller, C.SS.R. (Adapted for the Family and More Advanced Students in Catholic Schools and Colleges. with the Approbation of the Sacred Congregation for the Propagation of the Faith) No. III. (New York: Benziger Brothers, 1876). With Imrimatur. May be read on Catholic Apologetics Information. [NB: Catholic Apologetics Information, while it contains much that is extremely valuable, has an extremely negative view of the Second Vatican Council. It is not sedevacantist, but its view must be corrected in light of Pope Benedict XVI’s hermeneutics of continuity.]
  • A Full Catechism of the Catholic Religion, by Joseph Deharbe, 1800-1871; translated by John Fander. With questions for examination, revised, enlarged, and edited by Bishop Patrick Niesen Lynch, 1817-1882 (New York, Catholic Publication Society Co., 1889). Preceded by a short history of religion from the creation of the world to the present time. With Imprimatur. Available on Open Library and Internet Archive (Digitizing sponsor: MSN; Book contributor: New York Public Library).
  • Guide to a Catholic Church: for non-Catholic visitors; in which the meaning of various objects of devotion is simply explained, and a short exposition given of the main points of Catholic belief, with the prayers of the chief services in Latin and English, by Fox, W. L., O’Gorman, R. A (London : R. & T. Washbourne ; New York : Benziger Bros, 1904). With Imprimatur. Available at Open Library and Internet Archive (Digitizing sponsor: MSN, Book contributor: Regis College Library, University of Toronto).
  • The Incarnation, Birth, and Infancy of Jesus Christ, or, The Mysteries of the Faith, by Saint Alfonso Maria de’ Liguori [St. Alphonsus Maria de Liguori], ed. Eugene Grimm (New York, Cincinnati, and Chicago: Benziger Brothers, 1886). With Approbation from the Congregation of the Most Holy Redeemer. Available on Internet Archive and Open Library (Digitizing sponsor: MSN; Book contributor: Kelly Library, University of Toronto). May be downloaded in PDF format through the Saints’ Books index,
  • Man’s Call to Grace and Glory, by William Moran (Dublin: Catholic Truth Society of Ireland, 1946). Available on Lux Occulta
  • Our Faith: A Byzantine Catechism for Adults, by Fr. Casimir Kucharek (Allendale, N.J.; Combermere, Ontario, Canada: Alleluia Press, 1983). Available in PDF, Full Text and Daisy formats at Internet Archive. (Creative Commons license: Public Domain Mark 1.0. The index page states “This is a Ukrainian Catholic Catechism, bearing the imprimatur of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church, one of the Eastern Catholic Churches in union with the Pope of Rome. Not to be confused with the new Ukrainian Catholic Catechism “Christ our Pascha” which is due to be released in Ukrainian in June 2011. Permission to share on Internet given February 12, 2010.”)
  • Spirago’s Method of Christian Doctrine; a Manual for Priests, Teachers, and Parents, by Franz Spirago; ed. Archbishop Sebastian Gebhard Messmer (New York, Cincinnati, Chicago: Benziger Brothers, 1901). With Imprimatur. Available on Internet Archive and Open Library (Digitizing sponsor: MSN; Book contributor: Regis College Library, University of Toronto).
  • The Spirit of Catholicism, by Karl Adam. Dogma, Grace, Salvation, Church. Available at EWTN Library. [NB: This book is highly recommended by Dave Armstrong and Scott Hahn. Having read it repeatedly myself, I heartily agree with their approbation.]
  • The threshold of the Catholic Church: a course of plain instructions for those entering her communion, by John B Bagshawe (New York : Catholic Publication Society, 1872). With Imprimatur. Available at Open Library and Internet Archive (Digitizing sponsor: MSN, Book contributor: Kelly – University of Toronto (copyright status uncertain).

For legally more free ebooks, please visit the Catholic eBooks Project.

UPDATE (die XX Februarii A.D. MMXII): Please note that more catechisms and explanations have been added. See the List of Free eBooks (By Subject) of the Catholic eBooks Project.

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