Catholic Diocese of Mendi

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"To a fellow missionary disciple" - a letter from Bishop Don

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Wednesday, 01 July 2015 07:13

Bishop Donald's Coat of Arms

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Coats of Arms are designed for all bishops.  By custom the left side of the Coat of Arms is the Coat of Arms of the Diocese, and the right side represents the bishop.

Click here to see a description of the Coat of Arms of the Diocese of Mendi.

The Coat of Arms of Bishop Donald has several meaningful symbols:

  • The Coat of Arms is surrounded by a traditional hat called a gallero.  For bishops, the gallero is presented in green and with twelve tassles.
  • A golden processional cross is behind the Coat of Arms.  The cross leads the believer to life.
  • The top shows the crossed arms of Jesus and Saint Francis, a typical Franciscan Symbol.  Bishop Donald is a Capuchin-Franciscan and strives to live the joy of the gospel of Jesus Christ, inspired by the life of Saint Francis of Assisi.
  • Dividing the rest of the Coat of Arms is a cross.  The Cross and Resurrection of Jesus Christ are the centre of the history of salvation.
  • The two checkerboard patterns come from the Coats of Arms of the City of Pittsburgh and the Diocese of Pittsburgh, where Bishop Donald was born and raised.
  • In upper right quadrant is a fleur-de-lis, a traditional symbol of the Virgin Mary.  Bishop Donald has a deep devotion to the Virgin Mary under various avocations: Our Lady of Fatima, Our Lady of Guadalupe, Mother of the Divine Shepherd...
  • In the lower left quadrant is the sword of Saint Michael the Archangel, Patron Saint of Papua New Guinea.  (Bishop Donald's Confirmation name is Michael.)  The intercession of Saint Michael is invoked as a protection from evil.

The Episcopal Motto of Bishop Donald is (in pidgin): Stap Wanbel Wantaim Sios.  In Latin it is rendered as "Sentire cum Ecclesia"; in Spanish, "Sentir con la Iglesia"; in English, "Be of one mind and one heart with the Church".  It is the same episcopal motto as the late Archbishop of San Salvador, Blessed Oscar Arnulfo Romero, martyred by enemies of the faith and truth on 24 March 1980.  The motto appears in various Christian sources, including the writings of Saint Ignatius Loyola.  It has two significant levels of meaning:  The first is that the people of God are called to respect and follow the sound teachings and example of their shepherds; and the second, shepherds are to be close to their people, sharing their joys and sorrows, their hopes and aspirations.  In this way, the shepherds will follow the example of Jesus, the Chief Shepherd and guardian of our souls.  The original Coat of Arms was produced by Deacon Paul Sullivan.

Read 5335 times Last modified on Wednesday, 05 October 2016 06:40

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