Green with twelve tassels for a diocesan Bishop.

Processional Cross

Displayed behind the shield, in simple form, an unadorned Latin crucifix.

The Shield

This plays on a pun from the motto (‘Heart and Hart’). As Jesus hung on the Cross, a soldier pierced His Heart from which flowed blood and water (John 19:34), the fountain of the Church’s sacramental life (Roman Missal). The shield shows a hart drinking from the Waters of Life, the Holy Spirit flowing from the Sacred Heart (John 7:38). The white hart is an ancient symbol of Christ, the New Adam, whose mouth, yearning for the Water of Life, drinks from the edge of the stream, recalling Psalm 41: “Like the deer that yearns for running streams, so my soul is yearning for you, my God.” The pose of the hart alludes to the naval and seafaring character of the Diocese of Portsmouth. In a playful reversal of heraldic convention, the open mouth of the hart points to the left, which in nautical terms is the port side, thus creating Ports-mouth. In the sky is a star, like that followed by the Magi who, led by the light of faith, journeyed far to find the infant Jesus. However, the star primarily represents Mary, conceived without original sin, the principle Patron of the Diocese. This Star of the Sea and Star of the New Evangelisation has seven points representing Mary’s seven sorrows and seven joys.”