Bishop Elshoff’s Coat of Arms

Bishop Elshoff’s main shield continues in silver. Silver represents God’s purity, His humility and His goodness.

This is the framework for his heraldic achievement design.

Bishop Gregory Elshoff is a professed member of the Order of Friars Minor, Capuchin. He also spent time as a missionary priest where he traveled to and from Mexico frequently, developing a great love and respect for the Mexican people and culture. Fr. Matthew also has a deep devotion to Our Lady of Guadalupe, whom he refers to as his “North Star”. These important details are a large part of the framework for Bishop Elshoff’s heraldic achievement design.

Similar to his brother bishops in Los Angeles, Bishop Elshoff has the unique shield representing the historic honor of being ordained in the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels, in the Archdiocese and city dedicated to the same title. The charge (or emblem) is the combination of the Fleur de Lys for the Blessed Mother and a pair of angel’s wings on a blue chief, to honor Our Lady. Bishop Elshoff’s design has the Fleur de Lys in gold and the wings in silver.

Bishop Elshoff’s main shield continues in silver. Silver represents God’s purity, His humility and His goodness. Bishop Elshoff’s main shield was chosen for these principles. Bishop Elshoff’s Eucharistic element is very unique to his life and testimony. His deep devotion to St Francis and to the Holy Stigmata led the designer to employ the Five Wounds Eucharist…an heraldic device depicting an eradiated host in gold marked by the Christological monogram familiar to all Christians: the IHS.

The IHS monogram has two distinct meanings…the first being a representation of the first three transliterated letters of the name Jesus from the Greek. The second definition represents the initials of the first three words: In hoc signo (vinces) which translates to in this sign you will conquer…words attributed to the Emperor Constantine on the eve of his conversion to Christianity during a great battle in which God tells the emperor that he will succeed against his enemies if he follows the Cross of Christ.

The Christian Cross is rendered in blue which in Catholic heraldry represents the Missionary Cross of Christianity. This is to pay homage to Bishop Elshoff’s life-changing years spent as a missionary priest in Mexico. 

In each open corner of the Cross there is a Rose of Our Lady of Guadalupe, symbolizing Bishop Elshoff’s deep love for the Blessed Virgin Mary. The roses are placed surrounding the cross, to represent Mary always perpetually beside the Cross of Her Son. The roses are also symbolic of Our Lady of Guadalupe surrounding Bishop Elshoff in his vocation.

The bishop’s Coat of Arms has the same external elements specific to ecclesial heraldry, such as the galero hat, the twelve tassels, and the episcopal cross. Bishop Elshoff’s episcopal cross is worked in gold, with and a deep orange, Fiery Opal at the center. The Fiery Opal is the official stone of Mexico. Its placement in the design is to bring another homage to the people of (and the time spent by the bishop) in Mexico.

Episcopal Ordination

Learn more about this significant occasion where Msgr. Albert Bahhuth, Father Matthew Elshoff, OFM. Cap., Father Brian Nunes and Father Slawomir Szkredka, will become auxiliary bishops of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles.

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