As St. Patrick's Day approaches, many Catholics face a conundrum: how to celebrate the holiday without breaking Lenten restrictions that prohibit the consumption of meat on Fridays. With the holiday falling on a Friday this year, Catholics are left with no option but to forego the traditional corned beef feast.
No Dispensation from Chicago Archdiocese
To complicate matters further, the Chicago Archdiocese has made it clear that no dispensation will be granted to the faithful. This has left many Catholics in the Windy City feeling torn between observing their Lenten obligations and celebrating St. Patrick's Day.
A Loophole for Catholics
However, Cardinal Blase Cupich has offered a glimmer of hope. While Catholics cannot indulge in meat on St. Patrick's Day, they can substitute another form of penance or perform an act of charity to help the poor. Speaking on the issue, Cardinal Cupich stated, “We're not going to say it's okay to have the corned beef, but we are going to say that if you find yourself in a situation where it's being served and you're there, then you have to substitute another form of penance.”