CEBUANO Catholics, particularly those of Chinese descent, will be allowed to eat meat during the celebration of Chinese New Year tomorrow.
Cebu Archbishop Jose Palma granted them a dispensation from observing the Lenten practice of abstinence during the Chinese New Year celebrations, which falls on Feb. 16, a Friday.
Catholics 14 to 60 are required to abstain from meat and to fast on all Fridays of Lent, Ash Wednesday and Good Friday.
Archbishop Palma told reporters that the dispensation is a common practice done by bishops in the country as a show of solidarity with Filipino-Chinese Catholics who want to celebrate the Chinese New Year.
But Palma reminded them that while they are allowed to eat meat tomorrow, they should engage in acts of mercy and charity in return.
“If able, please practice good works, such as giving alms to the poor,” Palma said.
The prelate said that last year, they also gave a similar dispensation to Filipino-Chinese Catholics in Cebu.
Earlier this year, Manila Archbishop Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle issued a similar dispensation to Filipino-Chinese Catholics in the archdiocese.
Under the Code of Canon Law, a dispensation or the relaxation of a merely ecclesiastical law in a particular case can be granted by those who possess executive power within the limits of their competence.
In the case of a diocesan bishop like Palma, he can provide dispensation to the faithful from universal and disciplinary laws imposed by the Church. (JKV)