A TCW Reader from Europe asked:
Question. "Is it still from 12 o'clock in the
night that one must not take food or drink, other than water, before Holy Communion? Has Pope Pius XII reduced this time?"
Answer. Yes this was modified, however he (as does Pope Gregory XVIII) earnestly exhorts those who are able to
keep the old and venerable form of the Eucharistic Fast (from foods and liquids from midnight) before Holy Communion; to do so. (See details below for those who cannot.)
The New Eucharistic Fast Laws
(Motu Proprio of Pope Pius XII of March 19, 1957)
1. Priests and faithful before Mass or Holy Communion respectively - whether it is the morning, afternoon, or evening or Midnight Mass - must abstain for three
hours from solid foods and alcoholic beverages, and for one hour from non-alcoholic beverages. Water does not break the fast.
2. The infirm, even if not bedridden, may take non-alcoholic beverages and that which is really and properly medicine, either in liquid or solid form, before Mass or Holy Communion without any
His Holiness, Pope Pius XII, earnestly exhorts priests and faithful who are able to do so to observe the old and venerable form of the Eucharistic Fast (from foods and liquids from midnight) before Holy Communion.
All those who will make use of these concessions must compensate for the good received by becoming shining examples of a Christian life and principally with works of penance and charity.