Coat of Arms of Bishop Francisco González

Blazon:
Quarterly Gules and Or, a crescent reversed counterchanged, on a chief Azure three hearts Argent.

Significance:
The colors and cross on the Arms of Theodore Cardinal McCarrick, Archbishop of Washington, have been the inspiration for the Arms of Bishop Francisco González. By dividing the Bishop’s shield into four quarters, red and gold (yellow), a cross is formed, thus honoring the Cardinal whom he assists as an auxiliary bishop.

The central charge on the shield is a reversed crescent, symbolic of the patron saint of Bishop González; it is borne on the Arms of the family of the Jesuit saint, Francis Xavier (1506-1551). The colors of the crescent have been counter colored with those of the surface of the shield to emphasize the Castilian ancestry of the Bishop. The Arms of Castile, Spain, and branches of the González family display red and gold (yellow) colors.

The blue “chief” or upper portion of the shield bears three silver (white) hearts to denote Bishop González is a member of the Sons of the Holy Family, founded in Spain in 1864 by Blessed Joseph Manyanet.

The insignia of this congregation has been modified to bring it within the canons of heraldic blazon. The silver (white) hearts complement the Bishop’s motto, PAX ET AMOR (Peace and Love); the hearts for love and the silver (white) for peace. The blue of the “chief” honors Our Lady of Lourdes, upon whose feast Bishop González received ordination in the episcopate at the hands of the Cardinal Archbishop of Washington.

Behind the Arms is placed a gold (yellow) processional cross and ensigning the whole achievement is a pontifical hat with its six tassels on each side, disposed in three rows, all in green. These are the heraldic insignia of a prelate of the rank of a bishop in accordance with the Instruction of the Holy See, dated 31 March, 1969. Before 1870, the pontifical hat was worn at solemn cavalcades held in conjunction with papal ceremonies. The color of the hat and the number tassels were signs of the rank of the prelate, a custom still preserved in ecclesiastical heraldry.

The Arms were devised by A.W.C. Phelps, Cleveland, Ohio in consultation with The Most Reverend Francisco González, S.F., D.D

Read Bishop González’s Biography