Looking for a catechism quote on cussing


are there any? If I dont respond, I forgot about this thread. I am really busy, and so someone pm me if you respond. I dont check on here much because im very busy


no no I want to know the answer too, I swear quit a lot and have no idea i its a sin or not :shrug:


Using vulgarities is usually a venial sin.

Swearing (Making false oaths) is a grave sin

Cursing (Asking God to damn somebody) is a grave sin.

A grave sin becomes a mortal sin if it is done with adequate knowledge and full consent of the will.

Don’t use vulgarities; it makes you look unsophisticated.


There are definatly biblical quotes about foul language or cussing.

Matthew 12:36 “I tell you, on the day of judgment men will render account for every careless word they utter.”

And Revelation 21:27 “But nothing unclean shall enter [the holy city Jersusalem],”

Col. 3:8
"But now you must get rid of all such things— anger, wrath, malice, slander and filthy language from your mouth."

Ephesians ch. 4:

**No foul language should come out of your mouths, **but only such as is good for needed edification, that it may impart grace to those who hear.

Ephesians Chapter 5:

So be imitators of God, as beloved children,
and live in love, as Christ loved us and handed himself over for us as a sacrificial offering to God for a fragrant aroma.
Immorality or any impurity or greed must not even be mentioned among you, as is fitting among holy ones,
no obscenity or silly or suggestive talk, which is out of place, but instead, thanksgiving.

1st Timothy Chapter 4:

Let no one have contempt for your youth, but set an example for those who believe, in speech, conduct, love, faith, and purity.

2nd Timothy Chapter 2:

Avoid profane, idle talk, for such people will become more and more godless,

James 1:

If anyone thinks he is religious and does not bridle his tongue but deceives his heart, his religion is vain.

Sirach Chapter 23:

Give heed, my children, to the instruction that I pronounce, for he who keeps it will not be enslaved.
Through his lips is the sinner ensnared; the railer and the arrogant man fall thereby.
Let not your mouth form the habit of swearing, or becoming too familiar with the Holy Name.
Just as a slave that is constantly under scrutiny will not be without welts, So one who swears continually by the Holy Name will not remain free from sin.
A man who often swears heaps up obligations; the scourge will never be far from his house. If he swears in error, he incurs guilt; if he neglects his obligation, his sin is doubly great. If he swears without reason he cannot be found just, and all his house will suffer affliction.
There are words which merit death; may they never be heard among Jacob’s heirs. For all such words are foreign to the devout, who do not wallow in sin.
Let not your mouth become used to coarse talk, for in it lies sinful matter.
Keep your father and mother in mind when you sit among the mighty, Lest in their presence you commit a blunder and disgrace your upbringing, By wishing you had never been born or cursing the day of your birth.
A man who has the habit of abusive language will never mature in character as long as he lives.

The Catecism quote I found that vaguly agresses the issue is:

Incorporated into Christ by Baptism, Christians are “dead to sin and alive to God in Christ Jesus” and so participate in the life of the Risen Lord. Following Christ and united with him, Christians can strive to be “imitators of God as beloved children, and walk in love” by conforming their thoughts, words and actions to the “mind . . . which is yours in Christ Jesus,” and by following his example.


its too vague. but thank you for the quotes. but if its not in the catechism, its porbably okay to cuss. my priest said “damn” as well did a knight of Columbus. they said this in front of the congregation in a homily, and at a knight of columbus meeting.

does anyone know of a quote though so I can be sure on this?


What makes you think that if something is not explicitly mentioned in the Catechism, then it’s OK to do it? Jeanne_dArc gave you several very good verses from the Bible that tell us not to use offensive language. The Bible is the divinely inspired word of God. You can’t ignore something in the Bible just because you can’t find it in the Catechism.

Most people find cussing offensive. At the very least, it is a sin against charity to cuss in their presence.

And if someone in authority (parent, teacher, supervisor at work, etc.) has asked you not to do so, it is also a sin of disobedience.


Good question! Good responses.Here’s my take on this,In addition to the afore-mentioned I would say this> Is it charitable language?That’s sorta my litmus test.When I feel compelled to say “damn” what am I really trying to express?Anger? Frustration?Confusion? and on and on…Too often I engage mouth while brain in neutral or worse yet reverse.I know this is not part of your Q but just my two cents.:twocents:

I do not know of any list of cuss words Catholics are not allowed to say.It’s very much like some peoples definition of pornography::“I can’t define it,I just know it when I see it”


Also…Depending on which Catechism you read some go into more explanation than others…The one written by Fr John A Hardon goes into this in chapter regarding the Second Commandment.My other version printed in 1994 and from Liberia Editrice Vaticana mentions it but not in as much detail.None the less it’s forbidden by the Second Commandment and perhaps some one who is more computer savy can post a link.


The Catechism can’t list every single humanly possible sin, there is both Sacred Scripture and Sacred Tradition. And I might ask what did Catholic’s do for the hundreds of years that they didn’t have a Catechism? :slight_smile: I mean, the words of the Apostle St. Paul are pretty clear? “Therefore, putting away falsehood, speak the truth, each one to his neighbor, for we are members one of another… No foul language should come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for needed edification, that it may impart grace to those who hear” (Eph 4: 25, 29).

Don’t forget it is the year of St. Paul! :smiley:

I also found more from the Catechism that speaks on this, but from a different website:

As Christians, we must conform our words to the mind of Christ and follow His example (no. 1694). God’s presence and His truth must be honored in all speech (no. 2153). He is “the Lord of all speech” (no. 2152), and human speech is either in accord with or in opposition to God who is Truth itself (no. 2151). Living in accordance with Truth includes displaying an uprightness and sincerity in speech (no. 2468). The purpose of speech is to communicate truth (no. 2485).

Conversely, abusive language is forbidden by the fifth commandment (no. 2073), and anyone who is angry with his brother is liable to judgment (no. 2302-2303). Respect for the reputation of persons forbids every attitude and word likely to cause them unjust injury (no. 2477).

Finally, cussing often includes taking God’s name in vain, and this is certainly forbidden, as is language against the Church, the saints, and sacred things (no. 2148). -phatcatholic.blogspot.com/2008/04/taming-tongue.html


My priest told me in the Confessional that cussing is not a sin. He’s a very good and holy priest and I believe him. I now try and watch my language as much as possible, but until I come across a valid source from the Church saying that cussing is a sin, I’m not going to fret about it.


What sort of cussing are you talking about? Just curious.I,too try to watch my language but sometimes the occasional “damn it” still comes out.I honestly am not asking Our Lord to be involved in this action.Now on the other hand to include His Name in the above exclamation would be a sin Right?


The magazine This Rock has a pretty good article on this subject here’s a link catholic.com/thisrock/2000/0007fea3.asp

I don’t know if you haven’t read the Scripture quotes, however it is Catholic teaching that the Sacred Scripture is Inerrant, that is without errors. Whereas, people (as holy as they might be) are not inerrant, this includes bishops, priests, the laity. I make mistakes all the time. :smiley:

Here’s a quote from This Rock: “The Bible is a Catholic book. The Church gave it to the world and established its canon. You can rest assured that there is nothing—nothing!—in the Bible that contradicts anything in Catholicism and nothing—nothing!—in Catholicism that contradicts anything in the Bible.”


Also, saying damn is not necessarily swearing. It is a legitimate word if used correctly. 2nd, many knights of columbus are anything but holy… I have heard of knights who drink to excess, cuss, etc… Just cause someone is a knight doesnt mean they are holy


What is it then, if such a thing slips out by accident (from a lifetime of bad habits)?


DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.