Friday, March 03, 2006

Not a bad idea...

Rocco's keeping score on the indults for St. Patrick's Day:

In the diocese of Sioux City, Bishop Walker Nickless will not grant the indult -- a release from the chancery makes explicit note that 17 March remains a day of abstinence. As Nickless' parents ran a butcher shop in Denver, you would think that he'd be eager to help a brother out.

St. Patrick's Day falls on a Friday this year. Northwest Iowa does not have an especially large Irish population really except for one place: Emmetsburg. It is a small town of less than 4,000. However, up to the 1990s, there were two different Catholic parishes in town and the Irish and Catholic identities remains strong. The three-day celebration that falls on the weekend closest to March 17th is quite extensive, with dignitaries from Dublin flying in, a parade, etc.

From the Emmetsburg website on the parliamentarians:

Since 1962 when Emmetsburg and Dublin, Ireland, were officially declared “Sister Cities,” it has been a privilege and honor for the St. Patrick’s Association to host a member of the Irish Parliament to reign over the three-day celebration. Through this association, many lasting friendships have been formed.

While visiting here, the Parliamentarians from Ireland are given the opportunity to watch Iowa’s governing bodies at work and are invited to address both sessions of the Iowa State Legislature. Although some have left political life and returned to successful businesses at home, these Parliamentarians keep actively in touch with affairs of the government, both at home and abroad.

That St. Patrick's Day falls on a Friday is something of a hardship, but given that the principal celebrations of the day in Northwest Iowa extend from Friday on through Saturday and Sunday, the lack of an indult is not the end of the world.

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