HISTORY OF FAMILY CRESTS

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HISTORY OF FAMILY CRESTS
HISTORY OF FAMILY CRESTS
A coat of arms or family crest is a shield that tells a story through symbols. If we
know how to read the story we can learn about a person’s dignity, rank, title, their
history and values that are important to them.
Crests were very common in the Middle Ages as designs on the shield of a knight,
it was a way to identify him as an individual. The father of a family would pass the
crest down to his firstborn son who would alter it slightly to make it his own.
PAPAL CRESTS
POPE ST. JOHN PAUL II
Cross – Represents the central Christian mystery of Redemption
Golden “M” – Mary beneath the Cross
Tiara – Symbol of Papal authority
Crossed Keys – Symbols of spiritual and temporal power
POPE BENEDICT XVI
Shape – Chalice, commonly used in the Church
Gold Chape – Symbol of religion, inspired by Benedictine spirituality
Crossed Keys – Symbols of spiritual and temporal power
Pallium – Pastor of the flock entrusted to him by Christ
Moor’s Head - Ancient emblem of the Diocese of Freising
Brown Bear - This recalls the story of St. Corbinian, first Bishop of Freising, who was
attacked by a bear. The saint tamed the animal and made him carry his baggage to
Rome. The bear is a symbol of the Bishop, tamed by God’s grace and the pack a symbol of the burden of the Episcopate.
Large Gold Shell – This recalls the legend of St. Augustine who meets a child trying
to scoop the water of the sea into a hole in the sand. Augustine connected this to his
own attempts to try to encompass the infinite God into the human mind. It is also a
symbol of pilgrims.
POPE FRANCIS
Radiant Sun with “IHS” - Emblem of the order of the Society of Jesus
Star - Symbolizes Mary, Mother of Christ and the Church
Spikenard Flower – St. Joseph, Patron of the Universal Church
Crossed Keys – Symbols of spiritual and temporal power
Motto – “By having mercy and by choosing,” this was chosen from a Homily of St.
Bede on the Feast of St. Matthew. At the age of 17 after confession, Jorge Bergoglio
felt the mercy of God call him to religious life on the Feast of St. Matthew.
ARCHBISHOP SCHNURR
Galero - The pontifical hat, which is a symbol of his rank as archbishop
Three Red Crosses - Symbolize the Holy Trinity, they are pointed at the tip for planting
in the earth and are budding at the tips with new life
Plow - Represents the Roman Hero Cincinnatus
Lilies - Symbol of St. Anthony of Padua, the Archbishop’s patron
Gold Snake, Cross and Red Background - Taken from Archbishop’s home diocese
(Sioux City, Iowa)
Scale of Justice - Symbol of Archbishop’s doctorate in Canon Law
Chi-Rho ( ) - A symbol of Christ
Motto - “Seek the face of the Lord,” by seeing Christ and having Him see us, we remain
focused on His call
Red, White and Blue - Honor the German Heritage of his parents, symbolize the time
he served the Church in the Nation’s capital
POPE ST. JOHN PAUL II
POPE BENEDICT XVI
POPE FRANCIS
ARCHBISHOP SCHNURR

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