In developing this coat-of-arms, it was intended to keep it synonymous, to a degree, with the official school logo. Thus, the logo is a prominent part of the crest. The Holy Cross coat-of-arms is divided “per pale”, i.e., in the terms of heraldy, it has both a male and a female half. Traditionally, husbands and wives “impaled” their crests in order to signify the importance of their family unit. As “family” is an integral concept of the Holy Cross philosophy, our crest is divided in this manner. In color, these two halves will be maroon and gray, respectively. By impaling our coat-of-arms, we also allude to the fact we are coeducational.
- As indicated previously, the most prominent part of this coat-of-arms is the CROSS itself. As the name of our community, it will remain the one symbol, which will serve to remind us of where we have traveled to get where we are. It will encourage us to strive always to live cheerfully the life that God give us. In times of despair, the Cross will be a sign of strength. In time of happiness, it will call us forth into deeper communion with God and each other, through Jesus. It is truly the Holy Cross of Jesus that binds us as one, and which gives our lives meaning. Without our death, we cannot have a deeper, fuller life.
- In the top left corner of the shield rest the CROWN AND STARS, symbol of the Assumption. This insignia identifies Holy Cross as a school within the Archdiocese of Louisville, whose cathedral takes its name from the Assumption.
- In the top right corner of the shield lies the FLEUR-DE-LIS, traditional symbol of the City of Louisville, the seat of this Archdiocese and the city with which Holy Cross is identified. (In the media, we are referred to as Louisville Holy Cross.)
- Between the symbols representing the Archdiocese and the City of Louisville, is found the RIBBON with the inscription, “In Hoc Signo Vincis.” This traditional quote, “By This Sign, Conquer”, brought moral strength and conviction to Constantine, the first Christian Emperor. At Holy Cross, we, too, receive great strength and conviction from our belief in Jesus Christ, the Son of God, by whose Cross we are given new life. “By this sign”, we shall also conquer: academic pursuits, spiritual decisions, athletic competitions, and life’s problems.
- Behind the Cross lie the bishop’s CROSIER and the shepherd’s WALKING STAFF. The first represents the Bishop David community and traditions; the latter, Angela Merici’s. Bishop David, having been raised to the episcopacy, and Angela Merici, constant pilgrimage maker, solidify the two communities which are the background to the formation of Holy Cross. Thus, their overlapping positions behind the Cross.
- At the base of the Cross stays the FLAME. It has a threefold meaning: (a) as the flame of the Holy Spirit, it demonstrates God’s presence and guidance in our endeavors, our spiritual aspects; (b) as the flame of Wisdom, it represents our high academic goals; (c) as the Olympic flame, it stands for our excellent athletic program which strives to develop our physical well-being.
- Entwined at the base of the shield are OLIVE BRANCHES, traditional Church signs of Peace and Justice. Just as Jesus said, “I am the vine, you are the branches”, we are daily reminded at Holy Cross of our Christian obligation to work for Peace and Justice in the building up of God’s kingdom.
- Surrounding the base of the coat-of-arms is a banner which proclaims: “I Glory in the Cross of Jesus.” Taken from the letter of St. Paul to the Galatians, this quote signifies a certain motto for Holy Cross High School. Everything else that is depicted on the crest may be summed up by this one quote, for it is through the Cross of Jesus that our lives find meaning. This quote will serve in years to come as an invitation to the entire Holy Cross community to give glory to God by accepting the Cross of Jesus, His Son.