Psalm 50(51) As an act of contrition

I recently came across Psalm 50(51)
“Have mercy on me, God, in your kindness.
In your compassion blot out my offense…”

I was wondering is it permissable to use this as an anct of contrition in confession. The one I learned as a child seems, well childish, by comparison. While I looked for alternative acts of contrition used around the world, could something suitable, as I think this might be, from scripture be used? Just asking…:shrug:

Perhaps part of it. :slight_smile: tis rather long for confession…

You can always make up one…

Pope Benedict XVI mentioned in his recent Document on Scripture using Scripture based acts of Contrition in confession…not that one must of course.

If interested:


Seven psalms used in the early Church to express sorrow for sin and a desire for pardon. they are Psalms 6,31 (32), 37 (38), 50 (51), 101 (102), 129 (130), and 142 (143).

And of course there is the bit about sacrafices at the end that may be obsolete now:shrug:
Maybe select verses? Still the beauty of the Psalms, particularly the Grail translation, is very appealing.

thanks for info Barbkw:thumbsup:

And it is prayed in the Liturgy of the Hours…

and here it is in music.

Miserere mei, Deus

My all time favorite

“Childish”? How so? :confused:

O my God I am heartly sorry for having offended Thee.I detest all my sins becaus e of their just punishment but most of all because they offend Thee My God who is all merciful and worthy of all my love. I firmly resolve with the help of Thy grace to sin no more and to avoid the near occasion of sin.Amen. Do you like this?Is this the one you learned as a child?

I’m curious to know why the psalm is 50 in DRB and 51 in the NASB?

The psalms are numbered slightly different in the Masoretic (Hebrew) and Septuagint (Greek) versions. Modern Bibles tend to follow the Masoretic numbering, while the Vulgate and Bibles translated from it follow the Septuagint. For more information, see here, here, this thread among others, or just google “psalm numbering.”

I’ve used it and I know others who do, too. :slight_smile:

Greetings Pilgrim1701,

I have gotten as penance to recite this Psalm before and I quite enjoy that. But as using it as an Act of Contrition maybe the verses that mean something to you. However I would ask your priest that you Confess to if this would be okay for you to use for the Act of Contrition and I would follow his counsel.

God Bless.
Anathama Sit

Thanks for the info and the links!

God Bless!:thumbsup:

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