Well if you are observing Lent and were sad you couldn't enjoy a corned beef sandwich, the St. Cloud diocese has granted a special dispensation allowing you to enjoy one, without the side of guilt.

The post from the Diocese of St. Cloud on social media was short and to the point.

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In honor of St. Patrick's Day, Bishop Neary has dispensed all Catholics in the Diocese of St. Cloud from the obligation to abstain from meat on Friday, March 17.

St. Cloud isn't the only diocese granting dispensation for St. Patrick's Day. The Archdiocese of Minneapolis & St. Paul also recently announced the dispensation of eating meat this Friday.

A general dispensation has been granted by Archbishop Hebda from the obligation of abstinence from meat on Friday, March 17, 2023, the Memorial of Saint Patrick.

Those taking advantage of the dispensation, however, are exhorted to undertake a work of charity, an exercise of piety, or an act of comparable penance on some other occasion during the Third Week of Lent.

The Washington Post wrote (paywall link) about Christian's abstaining from meat back in 2020 when the question was raised as to whether someone could eat an 'Impossible burger' on Fridays. It was in this article that the reason for the tradition of not eating meat on Fridays is explained.

"The Catholic Church instructs members to abstain from meat on Ash Wednesday and Fridays during Lent, a season of penitence and renewal leading up to Easter. The practice of forgoing meat dates to the early Church, when meat was considered a luxury and is meant to be an act of self-discipline."

So there you have it, go ahead and enjoy a corned beef sandwich on Friday!

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