Chanting Psalms

I usually carry a small New Testament and Psalms with me every day. I am so attached to the Liturgy of The Hours and the Psalms in particular. I am frequently living abroad in places I dont speak the language and like the feeling in the LOTH of being connected to other Catholics around the world as I pray. But I cant carry the one-volume Christian Prayer everywhere.

Is there a tradition in our Church of chanting Psalms plainly out of the Book of Psalms in order? Do any other Carholics do this? What kind of Psalm devotions does everyone else here participate in? Thanks for advice :slight_smile:

I am honestly not sure about Western practices, but in the Byzantine practice (which there are Byzantine Rite Catholics), our Psalter Books have the Psalms divided up into groups of ~ 3, and multiple of these groups are a Kathisma. And there are some specified prayers after each grouping. So from my experience, Byzantine-rite Christians would read psalms straight through in order but within these groupings.

There is that tradition, yes, and it’s part of the history of the LOTH.

Jews had a similar practice in the Old Testament, and later Christian hermits and desert fathers would pray all the Psalms every day. That practice, though modified in various forms is found in the East and West. Kmon23 mentioned Eastern practice, which I was unfamiliar with.

In the west, since saying ALL the Psalms everyday is not easy or in many cases practical, it lead to the Liturgy of the Hours. The LOTH was essentially a modification by Saint Benedict, so the Psalms would be prayed and chanted over the course of several days. The Breviary most of us are familiar with is a modified, portable version of the large books monks chant from, and was developed/popularized by the early Franciscans so, as itinerants, they could more easily bring the psalter with them. (The early rosaries also began as a substitute for praying the Psalms, especially for the illiterate; hence 150 Hail Mary’s before the Luminous were added. ).

so…yes. What you are suggesting is exactly where LOTH came from. Although it’s not the “official prayer of the church” in that way, it’s still an excellent practice if you want to do that. I really love reading Psalms in the adoration chapel. I’m also interested in hearing what other people here do

I don’t know if you have a smart phone or not, but if you do, the “divine office” app, from divineoffice.org is excellent. It’s the same version found in Amercian breviaries. It’s a great way to access the LOTH when traveling if you have cell service.

Actually I just remembered I have a small Psalter in the Byzantine style with every Kathisma but I stopped using it for some reason! I do love having the Gospels with me though which is why I have been carrying the entire NT plus Psalms rather than just that Psalter. Of course I dont expect myself to chant the entire Book of Psalms every single day but I’m also curious what private practices other people had surrounding the Psalms.

The Psalms were of course originally written to be sing, not said. :wink:

Yes I chant them! I love to sing! Haha

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