Lent calls us to focus on acts of prayer, fasting and almsgiving along with a renewed effort to discover the Lord more deeply in the scriptures. Lent also calls us to a true inner conversion of heart as we seek to follow Christ’s will more faithfully.

Many follow the instruction of abstaining from meat on Fridays during Lent, but we are also called to practice self-discipline and fast in other ways throughout the season.  This year Saint Patrick’s Day falls on Friday, a traditional day to abstain from eating meat. Recognizing the spiritual and cultural significance of Saint Patrick’s Day, I hereby grant a commutation of the discipline of abstaining from meat on March 17, 2023.

A commutation of this discipline means that those Catholics who choose to eat meat on Friday, March 17th are obliged to choose another day before March 24th to abstain from eating meat.

I hope this allows for a joyful celebration of Saint Patrick and Irish heritage, by blood or association, for all who find this day meaningful.

+Most Reverend Michael W. Fisher