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Was fasting and abstinence applied to all day and night for the Vigil of Christmas or only during the evening?

I was never sure about this and wanted to ask the forum.
All day. IIRC, the only 'partial day' was the forenoon of Holy Saturday.
So how did traditions like the 7 fishes for Italians start then? Certainly no fasting at that meal. Typically I try to fast until sun down on Christmas Eve, not that there's a requirement anymore.
The reason for the Easter Vigil fast was that after the Vigil liturgy it was Eastertide, but due to the shifted calendar and timetable before 1951, the Vigil Mass occured in the morning, so by noon it was finished.

Christmas begins liturgically with First Vespers, but the law of fast binds from midnight to midnight.

It is worth noting that under the present law one does not commit a sin by failing to fast and abstain on the Vigil of Christmas, but given the glut of food had on the next day, it seems quite possible for most, and thus to be recommended.
(12-22-2018, 11:05 PM)GangGreen Wrote: [ -> ]So how did traditions like the 7 fishes for Italians start then? Certainly no fasting at that meal. Typically I try to fast until sun down on Christmas Eve, not that there's a requirement anymore.

This is a very good question.  Come to think of it, I do not recall any Italian families that I know observe fasting in the Vigil of Christmas.

Would love to learn more about it.  I wonder if they got an exemption like how there is an exemption in the US for the day after Thanksgiving.
(12-23-2018, 12:36 AM)The Black Adder Wrote: [ -> ]
(12-22-2018, 11:05 PM)GangGreen Wrote: [ -> ]So how did traditions like the 7 fishes for Italians start then? Certainly no fasting at that meal. Typically I try to fast until sun down on Christmas Eve, not that there's a requirement anymore.

This is a very good question.  Come to think of it, I do not recall any Italian families that I know observe fasting in the Vigil of Christmas.

Would love to learn more about it.  I wonder if they got an exemption like how there is an exemption in the US for the day after Thanksgiving.

There's nothing in the Festa dei sette pesci which is inherently against fasting and abstinence. 

Certainly it observes the abstinence formerly required.

It should be remembered that fasting involves the quantity, not the quality of food. One could have a sumptuous lobster dinner and then two small collation and observe fasting. It might be contrary to the spirit of the penitential day, but it does not violate the law. The law allows one meal and two collations. To have a large seafood shared Christmas Vigil meal with lots of different dishes keeps the abstinence and does not break the fasting law.

It should be noted that the US Abstinence exemption on the Friday after Thanksgiving was probably revoked by the new norms of penance by Paul VI or at least by the 1983 Code which revoked all contrary customs and indults. That said, Abstinence on Friday in the US may be substituted by another fitting penance, so it's hard to say that it binds under pain of moral sin any more, since that extent of that penance that may be substituted is not defined, and when so vague hardly can one be held to act under pain of grave sin.