In 1519, Spanish explorer Hernán Cortés saw Montezuma, supreme emperor of the Aztecs, drink chocolatl: ground cocoa beans with fermented corn whipped to a froth.

Cortés introduced chocolate to Europe, quickly becoming a favorite of Spanish and French royalty. By the late 1600’s, chocolate had become so widespread the elite were accustomed to even drinking it within church.

Their justification: they claimed chocolate prevented fainting and fatigue during the long celebrations of Mass, overall having medicinal properties.

As it turns out, the consumption of chocolate during Mass was a debate that spanned over 100 years in the Church!

History tells of one bishop claiming the grand ladies of the land were breaking their Communion fast.

Pope Pius V sampled a cup of the hot liquid in 1569 and gave his take on the matter: it was “so foul that he decided there was no need to ban it.”

Just over a hundred years later, the debate was still raging on.

It was finally put to bed in 1662.

Pope Alexander VII settled the matter with a single sentence: “Liquidum non frangit jejunum.”

“Liquids do not break the fast.”

Could you drink hot chocolate in church today? According to Pope Alexander VII, you could.

Love uCATHOLIC?
Get our inspiring content delivered to your inbox every morning - FREE!

Comments

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here