LOTH praying the censored Psalms

In the OF LOTH there are 3 entire Psalms and a few verses from a few Psalms which have been omitted because of “psychological difficulty” due to their uncompromising imprecatory nature.

Unfortunately for me, these imprecatory verses and Psalms just so happen to be my favorite part of the Psalter. I imagine shooting demons with flaming arrows when I pray them…

For example, in Psalm 5, verse 11 is omitted - it reads “Declare them guilty, God; make them fall by their own devices.
Drive them out for their many sins; for they have rebelled against you.”

To my mind, this isn’t psychologically difficult - it’s psychologically comforting knowing God has my back, that he’ll punish the wicked, and that he’ll deal the vengeance which I can’t deal.

My question: Is it permissible to pray the LOTH and include these omitted verses?


1 Like

They are prayed in the Ordinariate Office as the Psalter in course is prayed over each month.

1 Like

Monastics do it all the time so I would say yes. In some breviaries, they are included in brackets, or in a footnote. In others, they are omitted. In my French LOTH (4-volume set) they are included in brackets in the Lent/Eastertide and Advent/Christmas volumes but not the others.

Most of the time I pray the Monastic breviary (schema B) and I do pray those verses and also the omitted psalms which are in that breviary. The omitted psalms are all at Vigils.


Excellent, thank you.

I understand (well, sort of) why they were censored, but I strongly disagree with the decision to censor the Words of God because of “psychological difficulties.”

Now when I see the Hour I’m praying includes Psalms with omitted verses, I’ll grab my Grail Psalter and pray the full Psalm.


Well if it’s any help, it’s a soon-to-be-saint (Paul VI) that insisted on their omission.

1 Like

It does help, I love St. Paul VI.

I understand he did it because some people would interpret them literally and not know about the long patristic tradition of praying the imprecatory Psalms in spiritual warfare against the demons and not applying them to humans… And that he probably did it because he envisaged the revised LOTH being prayed by the laity at large, and not just the educated clergy and religious.

I understand it, but I still disagree with the decision. But I’m glad that it’s a licit option to include them if you desire.

1 Like

This topic was automatically closed 14 days after the last reply. New replies are no longer allowed.

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.