“My name is Conlon – very Irish.  More significantly I am Catholic, and Lent is an important season of prayer, penance and charity.  If some fellow Catholics within the Diocese of Joliet feel that eating meat on St. Patrick’s Day – which this year falls on a Friday – is important enough to break the rule of abstinence, they are permitted to make a conscientious decision to do so.  In that case, they should substitute some other form of penance.  For myself, I see no connection between honoring the patron saint and apostle of Ireland and eating corned beef.”