Pay the priest and you can eat meat on Fridays?

A lot of people have said that, in Portugal, if you gave money to the priest you were permitted to eat meat on Lenten Fridays :eek:
Have you guys ever heard this? Can this be consider simony?

I’ve never heard of this and I would need a source with details to comment.

Simony? Good question. My guess is, if true, he’s giving a dispensation and accepting a donation for it, which he may or may not have the authority to do. It could be kosher if taken in the sense that the donor is giving a substitute penance (giving up treasure) in place of the Friday abstinence. Again, don’t know if that is allowable. Seems he would at least have to have the permission of his bishop.

Sort of a swindle. Why would anyone want to lose the graces bestowed upon us for the sacrifice of abstaining from meat on Friday? I need all the graces I can get. Certainly not worth any price.

This is the first I have heard of such a practice. Like Scott, I couldn’t possibly comment further without a source. “A lot of people” could mean anything.

Never heard of this. Very questionable.

Simony is defined as “the buying and selling of spiritual things.” Typically, this is understood to mean paying for the sacraments.

If it actually happens – and I agree with the other posters here: it sounds more like an urban legend than an actual occurrence – then it would sure seem shady, but I’m not certain that it would rise to the level of simony. :shrug:

This sounds to me like a mixed up tale that has the facts wrong, but is based in something true.

It probably has to do with the Bula de la Cruzada given in Spain and Portugal during the time of the Reconquista and the Crusades.

Some parts of those indulgences and indults come down to us today including the indult allowing almsgiving in place of abstinence from meat on Fridays **outside **of Lent and a few other days in Spain and Portugal.

Also under indult were their New World territories, so unless the Bishops conferences have changed the law, they also would be under this indult.

No different from the current USCCB indult allowing US Catholics to substitute a different penance for Friday abstinence outside Lent except that it is of much more ancient origin and almsgiving was the substitution according to means (the poor received the indult without any almsgiving).

1ke is correct. You can find more info on simony hete:

Was the priest running a restaurant?

If he were a ethical restaurateur, he should have local and renewable resources, and pay fair trade prices.

If he had a chain, then puerile in Venezuela could eat capybara; in Michigan, muskrat; in Portugal and Mexico, chicken.

This is what CAF has taught me, and so much more. :smiley:

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