With the launch of new websites for our parish and school, we have also commissioned a new parish logo, based on two ancient symbols of St. James. (Click here to read more about the new logo.) At the same time, we were looking for a good way to tie the logo into a crest for our school. A crest is a traditional means of expressing the mission of an (educational) organzation with a few figural symbols. The mission of our parish, of which Saint James Catholic School is an integral outreach, is to bring Jesus Christ to our people, that we may bring our people, ultimately, to Jesus Christ. As he was preparing his disciples for his Passion, Death and Resurrection, Our Lord revealed to them, "I am the Way, the Truth and the Life." (John 14:6). This statement is summarized by the symbols in our crest.
- The scallop shell, taken from our parish logo, recalls the path traveled by countless pilgrims who journeyed on The Way (or Camino) to Santiago in devotion to the Apostle James, our patron Saint. Jesus sent the apostles out to "to the ends of the earth" to proclaim the Gospel. We honor the saints inasmuch as they lead us, by their example, and help us, by their intercession, to encounter our Lord, Jesus Christ.
- The open book with the Greek letters "Alpha" and "Omega" on facing pages represents Truth. While "book learning" is one of the haulmarks of any school, the education offered by our Catholic schools is intended to lead our scholars to the Truth, Jesus Christ, who revealed through St. John (the brother of St. James): "'I am the Alpha and the Omega,' the Lord God, who is and who was and who is to come." (Revelation 1:8)
- The Host and the Chalice are an instantly-recognizable symbol of the Gift of the Eucharist, by which we receive the Body and Blood of Jesus Christ, who said, "the bread which I shall give is my flesh for the Life of the world...He who eats my flesh and drinks my blood will have Eternal Life."
Sometimes you will see the crest sub-scribed with the Latin words: "Via Veritas Vita" which may be translated into English as: "The Way, the Truth, and The Life". Latin is the langauge of scholarship in Western Civilization and has contributed to the formation of many modern languages (including English). It is also the official language of the Catholic Church.