Friday, March 19, 2021 is the Solemnity of Saint Joseph, Spouse of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

Solemnities are the highest rank of liturgical observance. Likened to a Sunday, the prescribed penance of Lent is not obligatory.

The Universal Law of the Church (Canon 1251) instructs that abstinence from meat, which is observed on the Fridays of Lent, is not binding when a solemnity should fall on a Friday.

Therefore, it is permissible to eat meat on March 19, 2021, the Solemnity of Saint Joseph, without violating the Lenten discipline.

This year, the Solemnity of Saint Joseph takes on special significance in the Diocese of Scranton as the Diocese concludes its own “Year of Saint Joseph.” The Most Reverend Joseph C. Bambera will celebrate Mass on Friday at 12:10 p.m. at the Cathedral of Saint Peter in Scranton to honor the patron and protector of the Universal Church. The faithful are encouraged to attend, watch online or honor Saint Joseph in some way.

For additional information on the Year of Saint Joseph in the Diocese of Scranton, visit: