What is the Catechism?
The most important book of the Church is the Sacred Scripture. In second place comes the Catechism. In the Catechism you find the reliable knowledge about the faith of the Catholic Church, accumulated during more than 2000 years – in precise formulations approved by the Holy Church herself.
The over 800 pages long, large 'Catechism of the Catholic Church' (or 'CCC'), which was promulgated in 1992, was written at the request of Pope John Paul II and a world Synod of Bishops. Significant contributions to this work have been made by the then Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, and later Cardinal of Vienna, Christoph Schönborn. This book was primarily addressed to bishops, priests and teachers of the faith.
From the 'Great Catechism' in 2005, the 'Compendium of the Catechism of the Catholic Church' emerged – at only 300 pages long, it is a highly abridged version of the 'CCC'. This compendium is meant for adults and families. The compendium is written in a question and answer format.
In order to allow teenagers and young adults in particular to gain an easier access to the knowledge of the faith of the Catholic Church, in the years from 2006 to 2011 the YOUCAT emerged from the great 'CCC' and the 'Compendium'. This book also has been written in a question and answer format.