“Why are there no evening Masses listed?”

This image is making the rounds, of the Mass schedule of St. Francis of Assisi parish in New York City from way back in the day…

It drives home a point we discuss in this space, but most people don’t like to discuss.

The reason there are no Masses after 1:00pm is because up until ARSH 1953, the Eucharistic Fast was FROM MIDNIGHT, including water, under pain of mortal sin. The evening liturgy of the Church was Vespers. There were no evening Masses because an evening Mass would require the priest and any faithful that wished to make a Sacramental Communion to fast from all food and water for eighteen hours or more. This is certainly possible, I have done it many times, but the times we live in are abnormal, to put it mildly. After the Triumph of the Immaculate Heart, the Eucharistic Fast will be restored, and evening Masses will likely cease, and Vespers will once again be common.

In ARSH 1953, Pope Pius XII relaxed the fast to allow water and necessary medication, and then in ARSH 1957 the Eucharistic Fast was relaxed further to only three hours. Pope Pius XII was very ill and dying in ARSH 1957, and it is suspected that infiltrators took advantage of the situation and rammed this effective elimination of the Eucharistic Fast through. Paul VI finished off the Eucharistic Fast in ARSH 1964 by reducing it to one hour, which was put into the 1983 Code of Canon Law, specifically Canon 919.

If you would like to read more about this, my original piece is HERE.

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