Can You Break Lent on St. Patrick’s Day?

Get your corned beef ready because we're feasting on Friday, March 17.

ILent is a Christian season that recognizes the hardships of Jesus Christ as he traveled through the desert for 40 days while fasting and resisting temptation from the devil. Lent (a shortened version of lengthen) starts on Ash Wednesday and ends on Holy Thursday.

This year, Lent runs from Feb. 22 through April 6. During this time, Christians will fast on Ash Wednesday and Good Friday. They also do not eat meat on Fridays. Many even choose a tempting item or activity to give up during this time as well. However, this year, some may question how they’re going to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day.

Can You Break Lent on St. Patrick’s Day?

St. Patrick’s Day is annually celebrated on March 17—this year, that date so happens to fall on a Friday during the season of Lent. As we mentioned before, Christians are expected to abstain from eating meat on Fridays. So are you allowed to eat corned beef on St. Patrick’s Day this year?

The answer depends on your archdiocese and your own level of comfort. Some look to their bishops for an answer. Back in 2017, Milwaukee Archbishop Jerome Listecki allowed area Catholics to feast on corned beef on St. Patrick’s Day, as it also fell on a Friday that year. If you are then given the go-ahead to celebrate with meat, it is up to your faith on whether or not you wish to partake. Everyone keeps their faith differently. Some even have their Lent meals planned out ahead of time.

Here are other green foods to enjoy on St. Patrick’s Day.

Some Milwaukeeans Can Eat Corned Beef and Cabbage This Year

Homemade Corned Beef and Cabbage with carrots and potatoesbhofack2/Getty Images

Archbishop Jerome Listecki, as mentioned above, has once again announced that Milwaukee-area Catholics are given permission to eat meat this St. Patrick’s Day.

“A feast day in the Church means what it says—it calls for celebratory feasting,” said Listecki. “However, Catholics who partake in the St. Patrick’s Day feast are encouraged to engage in another sacrificial or charitable act that day or give up meat on another day.”

Looks like corned beef and cabbage are on the menu this year. Happy feasting!

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Melany Love
Melany has been writing food news for Taste of Home for four years. Her knowledge of current culinary trends comes from her extensive time spent on FoodTok and scouring Instagram for any unusual food, charcuterie design or coffee shop creation. Apart from freelancing, she has worked at bookstores like Barnes & Noble and Half Price Books and as a barista. She has always wanted a career in writing, and got her start at Taste of Home. When she’s not working, Melany is playing the latest video game, curled up with a book or spending time with her cats.