It’s Okay To Eat Meat Today (Solemnities in Lent)

by Jimmy Akin

in Liturgical Year

Although eating meat on Fridays during Lent normally is prohibited, this does not apply on Fridays that are solemnities. The Code of Canon Law provides that:

Abstinence from meat, or from some other food as determined by the Episcopal Conference, is to be observed on all Fridays, unless a solemnity should fall on a Friday. Abstinence and fasting are to be observed on Ash Wednesday and Good Friday (Can. 1251).

Since today–Friday–is the solemnity of St. Joseph, the law of abstinence doesn’t apply.

Patrons of the highly-effective Atkins Diet, rejoice!

If you liked this post, you should join Jimmy's Secret Information Club to get more great info!


What is the Secret Information Club?I value your email privacy

{ 10 comments }

Edward March 2, 2006 at 9:49 am

Am I correct in thinking that St. Patrick’s is NOT a solemnity, and thus Canon 1251 doesn’t apply there? (It’s relevant for 2006 since St. Patrick’s falls on a Friday.)

Fr. Stephanos, O.S.B. March 2, 2006 at 9:54 am

Whether or not St. Patrick’s day is a solemnity can depend on the diocese you live in.
Also, liturgically a parish church named for St. Patrick could celebrate his day as a solemnity.

bill912 March 2, 2006 at 10:02 am

Some bishops suspend the rule on abstinence if St. Patrick’s Day falls on Friday, but, of course, each bishop’s authority pertains only to his own diocese.

Anonymous March 15, 2006 at 9:38 am

THE MOST REVEREND JOSEPH A. GALANTE, D.D.J.C.D
THE BISHOP OF CAMDEN NEW JERSEY
SAID MEAT MAY BE EATTEN IN HORNOR OF ST. PATRICK YOU MAY SUBSTITUTE SOME THING ELSE AS A PENANCE FOR THAT DAY.
THIS WAS IN OUR CHURCH BULLETIN LAST SUNDAY.

Anonymous March 15, 2006 at 9:41 am

THE MOST REVEREND JOSEPH A. GALANTE, D.D.J.C.D
THE BISHOP OF CAMDEN NEW JERSEY
SAID MEAT MAY BE EATEN IN HONOR OF ST. PATRICK YOU MAY SUBSTITUTE SOME THING ELSE AS A PENANCE FOR THAT DAY.
THIS WAS IN OUR CHURCH BULLETIN LAST SUNDAY.

Edward March 15, 2006 at 11:43 am

You don’t need to shout. :-)

Jim April 1, 2006 at 12:22 pm

If St. Joseph’s Day (March 19th) had fallen on a Friday in Lent would anyone even have thought to ask for a dispensation from the abstanence rule? St.Joseph’s day is widely celebrated by Americans of Polish and Italian descent.

Jason March 25, 2007 at 10:58 am

Jimmy,
The way I read things, the penetential practice is suspended for a Friday in Lent, but abstaining from meat is not. For example, if you gave up chocolate for Lent, and March 19 was a Friday, in honor of St. Joseph, the chocolate cake is fair game, but since it’s still Lent, I’m not sure the canon 1251 also suspends the Lenten practice of abastining from meat. The norms can be take multiple ways.

Terry March 24, 2009 at 11:19 pm

Thanks Jimmy, but as questioned above, what about personal penances and Solemnities. Like today is the Solemnity of the Annunciation of the Blessed Virgin Mary. So, does the Church “encourage us ” NOT to do Penence today, but to celebrate the Solemnity, of course no celebration ought to occurr at Notre Dame University.

Matheus March 25, 2009 at 9:05 am

what about personal penances and Solemnities.

Dear Terry
Jimmy has said that any solemnity dispenses from the (obligatory in US) abstinence from meat on Fridays in Lent, regardless of whether or not it’s a holy day of obligation.
Since the personal penances that you mention are not obligatory, I think you may safely imply that those may also be interrupted today.

Previous post:

Next post: