Catholics OK’d to eat corned beef on St. Patrick’s Day

Good news, Catholics. You’re cleared to consume as much corned beef as you can stand on St. Patrick’s Day.

The Catholic Spirit reports that Archbishop Bernard Hebda has granted a dispensation from the practice of not eating meat during Lent. And St. Patrick’s Day falls on a Friday this year.

However, if you eat corned beef on St. Patrick’s Day, you’re required to “undertake a work of charity, an exercise of piety, or an act of comparable penance on some other occasion during the Second Week of Lent,” according to Susan Mulheron, chancellor of canonical affairs for the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis.

“When you get a dispensation — and I think it’s coming — you should do penance on another occasion,” the archbishop said when he was quizzed on the subject earlier this month at a young Catholics gathering at O’Gara’s. “So it’s like a get out of jail free card, but you have to pay sometime.”

(h/t: Phil Picardi)

  • jon

    Looks like other archdiocese are also granting dispensation… milwaukee and baltimore at least…

    IF one arch bishop makes the dispensation does it apply to all catholics? or can only the pope do that?

    • It applies only to the geographic area of the archdiocese AND people who are visiting within it.

      I believe the last time this happened was in 2007 or so. Tim Dolan was archbishop at the time in Milwaukee and he also granted a dispensation.

      • jon

        So milwaukee and the twin cities covers all of the dakotas MN, and WI… accordign to this map:

        They say Iowa didn’t go for it here:

        So catholics in Iowa don’t get bulk dispensation, they either need to go ask, or cross the border into MN to get their corn beef…

        Sucks to be catholic in Iowa I guess.

        • Can’t figure out the color scheme on that map. Those lines are dividing lines between the diocese. Winona, St Cloud, Duluth, etc are all independent of the archdiocese and would require a dispensation from their own bishop

          • Thomas Mercier

            I’m a little rusty on my Catholic church aspects but I believe the Winona, St Cloud and Duluth dioceses are semi-independent. Hence the archdioceses and archbishop who is over several dioceses. And I think the Pope is the archbishop of Rome which puts him as the top, top bishop.

        • Sam M

          Kinda like how I have to go to Wisconsin on Sundays for booze. We all have our cross.

          • sciguy

            until July 1st, that is 🙂

  • Jerry

    I don’t know. A bunch immigrants celebrating their non-Protestant religion? Seems un-American to me.

    • jon

      Nah, it’s alright because there is beer.
      Beer makes anything more American.

      Heck if ramadan were to add a kegger to the celebration then America would be on board with Islam.

      It all goes back to the founding fathers when Ben Franklin said “Never trust a man who doesn’t drink.”

      • Jerry

        That actually makes sense. Now if only we could translate Americans fondness for getting drunk on Cinco de Mayo into actual fondness for huspanics.

        • jon

          If cinco de Mayo celebrations could focus on the dos equis and less on the tequila I think we’d be in good shape.

          No one wakes up the next morning thinking “Man, those guy who kept giving me tequila, I love those folks!”

  • Zachary

    This is pretty standard for when St. Pats falls on a Friday in lent. I remember when it happened a couple years back as well.

    • Not eating meat is meant to be a sacrifice, right? What do Catholic vegetarians do?

      • Zachary

        sacrifice something else. I would maybe say kale, but that’s devil’s food… 😉

        • Jared

          No seitan.

      • MrE85

        My old boss used to give up chocolate and booze for Lent. The booze part was easy, but she struggled to keep away from chocolate.

      • commonsensical1

        They give up something else, as the article suggests. Did you even read it?

  • Gary F

    My mother’s side is Coleman, so that’s good to know. But I’m mostly German.

    And Irish beer isn’t green. And read the fine print on your bottles of Guinness and Harp my lads, its made in Canada. You can still find some that came from the old sod, but its getting harder and harder to find.

    Tyrconnell or Teelings in moderation is a better choice.

    • Jerry

      So you’re saying the Irish don’t drink Czech style pilsners dyed green?

      Jameson is still ok, right?

  • Jeff

    I’ve been making my own. It’s always better than the slimy stuff in the plastic bag and not very difficult, just plan ahead. I worship with the cult of Meathead:

    But I might move to Kenji and a dry cure next time:

    I watched “The Young Pope” on HBO so that might have made me Catholic.

  • X.A. Smith

    Corned beef is usually considered an indulgence. In this instance it requires one.

  • John

    This strikes me as more than a little bit hypocritical on the part of the bishop.

  • Mr Bohemian

    I give up lent for lent
    good ol saint paddy’s day

    I’ll bay a corned beef sandwich for a Irish potato famine refugee

    and make charitable donation to the Guinness family for a pint

    meet me down at Dinty Moores for corned beef and cabbage
    and select readings from Angela’s Ashes accompanied by a harp