Fridays are a day of abstinence from meat. But this Friday, March 17, is the feast of St. Patrick, and Cardinal DiNardo is giving a dispensation from abstaining from meat. The Cardinal stated:
This year, St. Patrick's Day falls on a Lenten Friday. After consideration of the traditions often related to this festive holiday, Daniel Cardinal DiNardo is granting a dispensation of abstinence from meat on March 17 for local and visiting faithful in the Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston. Cardinal DiNardo is asking Catholics who are required to abstain from meat on Friday to do an extra act of charity or penance in exchange for eating meat.
In essence, one may eat this Friday, March 17. Can one still abstain from meat? Yes, if that is your decision. But if one does eat meat this Friday, they are to be reminded “to do an extra act of charity or penance in exchange for eating meat.”