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Spring football concession: Catholic schools can’t serve meat on Fridays during Lent

St. John Bosco's snack bar will have to figure out new menu items when football games are played during the 40 days of Lent.
St. John Bosco’s snack bar will have to figure out new menu items when football games are played during the 40 days of Lent beginning in February because meat is not allowed on Fridays.
(Monty McDermott)

You have to feel a little sympathy for Catholic school principals. The problems for getting school started keep mounting, from figuring out safety guidelines, to obtaining enough masks for staff and students, and planning schedules for online classes and eventually in-person classes.

Then there’s an issue with moving of the California high school football season to spring. Lent begins on Feb. 17, and Catholics are not supposed to eat meat on Fridays during the 40-day period.

This is a real challenge: No hot dogs, no tri-tip, no beef hamburgers, no tacos, no barbecue chicken will be available at snack shacks for any Catholic schools’ home games on Feb. 19, Feb. 26, March 6, March 13, March 20 and March 27.

“It’s the new snack bar dilemma,” L.A. Cathedral principal Brother John Montgomery said.

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Bring on the fish tacos at Sherman Oaks Notre Dame. Maybe Sante Fe Springs St. Paul High will offer a plant-based Beyond Burger. Bellflower St. John Bosco better prepare to serve lots of bean burritos.

Or Catholic schools can move their games to Thursday or Saturday, when meat may be eaten.

Nick Garcia, the strength and conditioning and shotput coach at Sherman Oaks Notre Dame, is a pit master with a specialty in Texas beef ribs.

Lent is the time of reflection leading up to Easter for many Christians as they prepare to remember and celebrate the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

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Of course, all the planning and worrying might be for naught if spectators are not allowed at games because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Just another challenge added to many others,” St. Francis athletic director Matt Luderer said.


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