SYRACUSE, N.Y. -- It hasn't happened in 73 years, but this Wednesday will mark both a popular holiday and the start of a season of abstinence for many Christians.
This year, Valentine's Day coincides with Ash Wednesday.
Ash Wednesday marks the start of the 40-day Lenten season, when Christians typically decide to "give up" something. Catholics, by doctrine, are asked to avoid eating meat and fast by only eating one full meal. Meanwhile, Valentine's Day is typically one of the busiest nights of the year for restaurants.
Spectrum spoke to Bishop Robert Cunningham of the Syracuse Roman Catholic Diocese, who advises Catholics to abide by the rule. He suggests that practicing Catholics enjoy meat and other Valentine's Day goodies on Tuesday before Lent.
"This happens very rarely. I believe the last time it happened was 1945 that Valentine's Day and Ash Wednesday go together," Cunningham said. "But we are not giving a dispensation that day. It's one of only two days in the church's year that we're asked to fast."
The other day Catholics are asked to fast is on Good Friday, while they're asked to abstain from eating meat every Friday during Lent.
Restaurants we spoke with say they plan on offering a special menu or offering plenty of seafood selections.