This is my review of the Catholic streaming service known as, Formed. It’s like Netflix or Hulu but all the content is completely Catholic. On Formed, you can find movies, downloadable ebooks, audiobooks, documentaries, at-home spiritual retreats, children’s content, and shows. It’s one of the best resources for all Catholics.
Be sure to check with your parish if Formed is offered for free or discounted for active parishioners. When my family registered at our parish we received a voucher for the streaming service.
I mention that my family now receives this streaming service for free. However, when we first started using this service we paid a monthly subscription fee. The reason I wanted to mention this is because I want you to know that is because I want my review to be as unbiased as possible. No one is paying me for my review. Nobody at the Augustine Institute knows that I am writing this review. The reason I am writing this is that it’s one of the greatest Catholic resources I’ve found for my family.
If you’re interested in finding other great resources for the faith, be sure to check out my Catholic Resources page.
So why not just watch Netflix and Hulu?
Although, these are incredibly popular streaming services we don’t subscribe to them in my household. Our family doesn’t enjoy watching tv shows. However, we love to have family movie nights on weekends. Unfortunately, Hulu and Netflix leave a lot to be desired when it comes to enjoying family films.
Another reason we don’t subscribe to these streaming services is that some of the content is either poorly produced, morally offensive, or even sacrilegious. Of course, not all content on these streaming services is bad but there wasn’t enough good or even entertaining content to keep us on the streaming platforms.
We did not have to think twice about cutting these subscriptions. By doing so, we received two added benefits – more time and money saved. Our family isn’t glued to the tv and we save a bit of money that is better spent going to the zoo, the bookstore, or botanical garden. This doesn’t mean we don’t watch movies or shows ever. It’s just not our primary form of entertainment.
Although don’t throw away your tv just yet!
Fortunately, there’s a streaming service for Catholic families like us. Everyone in my household loves Formed. We have had the subscription since 2019 so we have 2 years of experience with this service. However, I should mention that we haven’t seen all the content on the streaming service. There are so many great shows and movies it’s impossible to see everything on the platform. I will do my best to list the best ones my family has enjoyed.
Best Catholic Family Movies:
Important Note: Not all the content in these movies is suitable for young children. Usually, in my home, my husband and I fast forward any scene we deem inappropriate for our children. However, we are very lenient on the content our children are allowed to watch. Especially if there is an overall moral lesson for them to learn.
This is a list of my favorite movies to watch
(more films will be added as I watch them):
- Mother Teresa
- Bakhita (only available for rent or purchase)
- The Bible Collection – Solomon
- The Bible Collection – Apocalypse
- St. Giuseppe Moscati: Doctor to the Poor
Best Children’s Shows:
- The Eucharist for Little Children
- Brother Francis
- Signs of Grace
- The Jesus Stories
- The Witness Trilogy
- Totally Toddlers: Alphabet
- Totally Toddlers: Numbers
- The Slugs and Bugs Show
- Adventure Catechism
- Lent with Brother Francis (4-part series)
- Brother Francis: The Stations of the Cross
- The Wonderful World of Benjamin Cello
- Ryan Defrates: Secret Agent
- Animated Bible Series (better suited for older children/ teens)
Best Children’s Movies
- The Saints and Heroes Collection (this is a collection of films by CCC of America)
- Joseph: Beloved Son Rejected Slave
- Mother Teresa: Seeing the Face of Jesus
Children’s Read Aloud Books on Video:
- The Suitcase: A Story About Giving by Jane Meyer
- Hildegard’s Gift by Megan Hoyt
- Kristoph & the First Christmas Tree: A Legend of St. Boniface
Best Shows for Adults:
- Lectio – Bible Study Series
- The Search – series on finding purpose in life
- The Sacraments (with PDF printable study guides)
- Who Am I to Judge? with Dr. Edward Sri (with PDF printable study guides)
- Explaining the Faith: by Fr. Chris Alar, MIC (13-Part Series)
At Home Spiritual Retreats by Hearts Afire with Printable Activities:
- 33 Days to Morning Glory
- Consoling the Heart of Jesus
- Wisdom and Works of Mercy
What about books and audiobooks?
Now, this is my favorite part of this streaming service. Does Netflix or Hulu give you a library of books to enjoy? Nope. Another reason why Formed is amazing.
I’ve downloaded most of the books on my kindle and purchased e-readers for my children as well. Warning: actually downloaded these books may be a bit tricky so I’ll create a how-to guide explaining how I did it step by step. Stayed tuned for that post.
Best Books for Children:
- To Jesus Through Mary by Peggy Olds (PDF Format Only)
- Bible Stories for Little Children (EPUB and Kindle formats)
- Saint Thomas Aquinas by Raïssa Maritain (EPUB and Kindle formats)
- Read-Aloud Book of Bible Stories by Amy Steedman (EPUB)
- Twenty Tales of Irish Saints by Alice Curtayne (EPUB)
- The Book of Saints and Heroes by Andrew & Lenora Lang (EPUB and Kindle formats)
- Young George and the Dragon (EPUB and MOBI)
Best Audio Collections for Children:
- The Truth to Inspire Series (collection of audio-dramas of the lives of Saints made for children)
- The King is Born: A Collection of Christmas Praises in Song
- The Story of Christmas: An Audio Drama About the First Christmas
- Walking with Jesus: The Rosary Prayers in Song
Best Books about the Faith:
- The Spiritual Exercise of St. Ignatius by Saint Ignatius of Loyola (Kindle and EPUB)
- The Imitation of Christ by Thomas á Kempis (EPUB and MOBI)
- The Gospel of Mark: Ignatius Catholic Study Bible by Scott Hahn and Curtis Mitch (Kindle and EPUB)
- A Shorter Summa: The Essential Philosophical Passages of St. Thomas Aquinas Summa Theologica by Peter Kreeft (Kindle and EPUB)
- The World’s First Love: Mary, Mother of God by Fulton J. Sheen (Kindle and EPUB)
- Catholic Literary Giants by Joseph Pearce (Kindle and EPUB)
- Saint Augustine’s Confessions in Latin and English by St. Augustine (Kindle and EPUB)
- The Ignatius Catholic Study Bible: New Testament (Kindle and EPUB)
Best Classic Fiction Books:
- Julius Caesar by William Shakespeare ed. by Joseph Pearce (EPUB and MOBI)
- Manalive by G. K. Chesterton (EPUB and Kindle)
- Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë, ed. by Joseph Pearce (EPUB and Kindle)
- Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen, ed. by Joseph Pearce (EPUB and Kindle)
- Joan of Arc by Mark Twain (EPUB and Kindle)
- Father Elijah: An Apocalypse by Michael O’Brien (EPUB and Kindle)
- Frankenstein by Mary Shelley, ed. by Joseph Pearce (EPUB and Kindle)
Audiobooks and Educational Audio:
- The World’s First Love: Mary, Mother of God Audio Book by Fulton Sheen
- Father Elijah: An Apocalypse Audio Book by Michael D. O’Brien
- Lepanto Audio Book by G. K. Chesterton
- Manalive by G.K. Chesterton
- Literature: What Every Catholic Should Know by Joseph Pearce
- Understanding the Lord’s Prayer by Dr. Scott Hahn
- Who am I to Judge? Responding to Relativism with Logic and Love by Edward Sri
- The Incredible Mind of G.K. Chesterton by Dale Ahlquist
Best Audiodramas to Enjoy:
- The Trials of Saint Patrick (My favorite story! It Beats Lord of the Rings, and that’s saying something because I’m a HUGE fan. Best listened to while on a road trip.)
- Brother Francis: The Barefoot Saint of Assisi
- The Legends of Robin Hood
I absolutely love this service! My family is happily viewing all the movies, books, and audio. There is so much to enjoy. This streaming service has changed the way my family watch tv. It has been an invaluable resource for growing in our Catholic faith. I hope you found value in this review. If you’re looking for more ways to grow in your Catholic faith, be sure to check out my Catholic Resources page. I will be adding more content to this page as this streaming service evolves.