Eucharist and Blood Work

Hi everyone. I haven’t been here in a while. :slight_smile:

Ok, so I just got back from my physical appointment with a medical nurse. After complying with tests such as hearing, breathing, etc, the nurse comes back to me and tells me that I should schedule an appointment for blood testing, thus I could not eat or drink anything except water. At first this surprised me as I never ate nothing for a few days or more (except for Lent fasting) but then I remembered my Catholic obligation to receive Christ in his body and blood. I told my doctor that I couldn’t fast for a few days to a week WITHOUT receiving the Eucharist. The Eucharist is essential for me, a day without it is like leaving home with one arm, I feel incomplete. So she then decided that I forgo the fasting for the blood test and that I get a flu shot instead.

But thinking now, I’m not sure if I made the right choice, in regards to my health. Maybe my blood is clogging and I have no clue. Or maybe there could’ve been a way around it? I’m not too sure if I made the right decision. :confused:

You have no obligation to receive the Eucharist ever day, nor even every week. While you may want to do so, nothing in Church teaching requires it. Our only obligation is to receive at *least *once during the Easter season.

It is perfectly fine to fast for the 12 hours or however long they want you to fast prior to having a blood test. This is quite common.

I’m not sure where you got the idea you’d have to fast for a *week *before taking a blood sample. Usually it is from midnight the night before, or maybe earlier in the evening before, until the time of the test the next morning. Usually 12 hours or less.

You should exercise prudence with your health. Contact your health care provider to discuss the tests further.

Do you have the option of having your bloodwork done at a hospital where you can do it at your convenience? That’s how mine is done. The dr gives me the order and I take it to the hospital early in the morning before my day starts.

I doubt the Eucharist will have any ill affects on your blood work. I wouldn’t have even mentioned it. Also as stated by another poster, there is no obligation to take Holy Communion, even on Sundays.

Did the nurse tell you that you had to fast for a few days or more? I’ve never heard of blood tests that required more than either fasting from midnight or fasting for 12 hours.

The “Catholic obligation to receive Christ” is that you must receive communion at least once a year.

It sounds like you’ve potentially misunderstood both the medical side and the Church side of things.

There is no obligation to receive the Eucharist every single day. That almost sounds scrupulous. If you have not had blood work recently, it might be an important thing to do to maintain your health.

I have to agree with everything the other posters have mentioned here. I find it extremely unlikely that the doctors would have you fast for anything more than 12 hours, I know in my case most of the time it is 8 hours for blood tests.

As another poster suggested perhaps you could get your blood work orders and take them to a closer, more easily accessible hospital, and go first thing in the morning. You may even be able to go before you go to daily mass and then you’d be able to receive communion. As others have pointed out you are only required to receive once per year during Easter. You do not have to receive every time you go to mass.

Please check with your doctor to get your fasting times clarified.


Take the advice of your doctor. Even our Lord Jesus reprimanded St. Maria Faustina for not taking the advice of her doctors when she thought her spiritual exercises was more important. You seem to be a very committed Catholic so missing one Holy Communion is not going to deter your relationship with Jesus. In fact Jesus will be more pleased when you take the advice of those who are doctors and nurses.

These tests are normally done in the morning, after 12 hours’ fast (to purge sugars, etc from the body).

So get the test done in the morning and then go to noon Mass. QED.


Of course there is no obligation to receive the Holy Eucharist every day but if one goes to Mass daily, and has to skip Communion, it’s like walking out and leaving Someone behind. I have been attending daily Mass for 40 years and it is not scrupulous to desire to receive Our Lord at each Mass. I also have to fast before blood work every 3 months but my Dr. knows I go to early Mass first and she says it’s OK to receive the Host. My blood is regularly tested for diabetes, cholesterol and liver. God Bless, Memaw

As St. Alphosus Ligouri said, ‘Do you feel too busy to make time for our Lord? An Act of Spiritual Communion can help! No matter what your day is like, Jesus can help make it better, or at least more bearable, if you ask him for His help and guidance in prayers such as this one, composed by St. Alphonsus Liguori in the 18th century’:

My Jesus, I believe that you are present in the most Blessed Sacrament. I love You above all things and I desire to receive You into my soul. Since I cannot now receive You sacramentally, come at least spiritually into my heart. I embrace You as if You have already come, and unite myself wholly to You. Never permit me to be separated from You. Amen :thumbsup:

Thanks everyone for your suggestions and advice.

I’m deciding to call my doctors tomorrow and ask if I can take the test soon. After a brief chat with a Priest, I’m a little less worried than before.

Amen. :thumbsup:

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