Monday 22 January 2018

Product Review - Formed - Augustine Institute

Augustine Institute

Formed is a Catholic Online Resource that is presented by Augustine Institute. It is sort of like a Catholic Netflix and yet it is much more than that. It is a collection of materials for study, entertainment and spiritual growth and nourishment. It contains material for study, watching, listening or reading. Currently the content is predominantly available in English, with a growing selection of Spanish offerings.

Each week there is a video available with a brief teaching for the upcoming Sunday's mass readings. There are sections for Sacramental preparation, bible study, current topics and youth resources. Under the movies there are sub sections for movies, documentaries, apologetics and youth. The audio section contains talks, audio dramas, and audio books. And the book section contains nonfiction, fiction and youth resources. The movies and audio resources are available through the website or apps on both Android and iOS. The books are available to download in .EPUB (Android, Nook, iBooks) or a .PRC (Kindle, will work on Kindle on other operating systems.)

And our parish has purchased a parish wide subscription. That means each family, each individual in the parish has access to all of these resources. To sign up you go to a custom web address and register. The access code is available via the church office, or posters around the church.

And if you need assistance figuring out how to access or uncertain resources the link has all you need. Once you are registered you use the app or web browser to access the resources. In 2015 Lighthouse Catholic Media merged with the Augustinian Institute, so many of the lighthouse resources are available through Formed. And many of the books are from Lighthouse, Ignatius Press, Sophia Institute Press and more. There are some incredible resources for your personal or group study, entertainment and edification.

I have been testing it for two weeks now and have watched an amazing movie about Pope Saint John XXIII, read a book about Celtic saints, and one by Dr. Peter Kreeft, and am currently reading another. I have listened to some amazing talks especially by Father Mike Schmitz. I have also watched two movies with my children. My son loves it so much that we put it on his iPod and he has watched a few children's movies on his own. It is available to members of the parish through a parish membership at no cost to each family. But even if your parish does not choose to purchase a Parish subscription the cost is reasonable and the benefits amazing.

The content changes and on the homepage is a video lesson for the upcoming weekends mass readings. It includes a section highlighting the most popular content, including a pick of the week. There is also section focusing on the recently added content. The video and audio content will work on any device with an internet connection and a web browser. There are apps for iOS and Android. And the apps indicate that offline play is in development.

This is an incredible resource for any individual; but especially if purchased at the Parish level so check it out! And if you are still not certain you can get a free 7 day trial so you have nothing to lose. So go five Formed a try!

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