Some Catholics in NYC area given pass to eat meat Friday for St. Patrick's Day

NEW YORK -- Several archdioceses are granting a special dispensation for Saint Patrick's Day, which will allow Catholics in their dioceses to eat meat in order to celebrate the holiday.

Traditionally, Catholics are required to avoid consuming meat on the Fridays leading up to Easter during the time of Lent.

However, since Saint Patrick's Day lands on a Friday this year, some Catholic leaders are ruling in favor of this dispensation so that Catholics can celebrate the green holiday with a traditional meal of corned beef and cabbage.

These are the archdioceses in the New York, New Jersey and Connecticut area that have issued a pass to eat meat:
- New York
- Rockville Center
- Brooklyn
- Newark

According to, New York Cardinal Timothy Dolan communicated his support for this special dispensation to Catholic pastors in a letter in January.

While several dioceses are ruling in favor of enjoying the Irish celebration with a meat meal, Catholics are still encouraged to compensate for this exemption by participating in an act of charity or penance.

Information about this dispensation and the dioceses observing it can be found online on individual dioceses' websites.
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