THE EPISCOPAL COAT OF ARMS OF
MOST REV. ROBERTO ORENDAIN GAA
BISHOP OF NOVALICHES
EXPLANATION OF THE COAT OF ARMS
On the dexter side is the seal of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Novaliches. The star depicts the original settlement in Hacienda Tala which was established by Governor General Manuel Pavia y Lacy, Marquez de Novaliches. The light shining from the star is, according to the words of Fr. Horacio de la Costa, SJ, pagus novae lucis or place of the new light. The chalice and the host symbolize the first parish church founded by the Augustinians which was dedicated to the Blessed Sacrament. The light blue color background is emblematic of the La Mesa Dam reservoir, main source of water for the whole Metro Manila, and also represents the Marian character surrounding the presence of the Lord in the Blessed Sacrament.
At the sinister side are the Bishop’s personal symbols pertaining to his life and ministry. The upper field shows where the Bishop was formed as a priest. Against the red background, a color associated with the apostles, atop three wavy lines in blue, the heraldic symbol for water, is depicted a fishing boat that represents the Holy Apostles and their mission as fishers of men (cf. Matthew 4: 18-20). The sail is depicted as the Greek letters Chi-Ro taken from the logo of the Holy Apostles Senior Seminary in Makati City where the Bishop undertook his seminary formation and later on assigned as a formator and eventually its rector. At the upper corner of the field is a crescent moon (cf. Revelation 12: 1), taken from the seal of the Archdiocese of Manila that signifies the Immaculate Conception, patroness of the Archdiocese where the Bishop comes from.
The lower field with the white background, a symbol of prayer and holiness, pertains to the saints who greatly influenced the Bishop’s spiritual life. The sword marked with AMDG (ad majorem Dei gloriam) signifies the sword that St. Ignatius offered in Montserrat reflecting his self-surrender to God. The Bishop as seminary formator regularly facilitates retreats according to the Ignatian Spiritual Exercises. The Tau cross imposed on a sun signifies St. Francis of Assisi and the date of his Transitus, October 4, which is also the Bishop’s birthday. According to accounts, on that same day, St. Francis asked his brothers to pray with him the Canticle of the Sun, a prayer which he himself composed, praising God and His creation. Through St. Francis’ example, the Bishop strives to follow the virtues of poverty, humility, and simplicity.
The motto of the Bishop, FINEM FIDEI SALUTEM ANIMARUM, is taken from 1 Peter 1:8-9, “Although you have not seen him you love him; even though you do not see him now yet believe in him, you rejoice with an indescribable and glorious joy, as you attain the goal of faith, the salvation of your souls;” and inspired also by St. Ignatius’ first principle and foundation, “God created human beings to praise, reverence, and serve God, and by doing this, to save their souls.”
(Lifted from the Misalette for the Eucharistic Celebration and Rite of Ordination to the Sacred Order of Bishops of His Excellency Most Rev. Roberto O. Gaa, D.D., Bishop of Novaliches, August 22, 2019, Manila Metropolitan Cathedral, Minor Basilica of the Immaculate Conception, Intramuros, Manila)