What does the Diocese of Lansing Catholic Social Teaching logo symbolize?

The Diocese of Lansing Catholic Social Teaching logo is an original design in the form of a cross, the sign of our redemption.

The uppermost quadrant features a cross, anchor, and heart, signifying faith, hope, and charity.

On the horizonal quadrants, seven stars represent seven virtues (the three theological virtues, plus the four cardinal virtues). At the same time, they signify the sacraments, since the practice of the virtues is strengthened by the sacraments, and the sacraments call us to lead a life of virtue. The stars also allude to the seven works of mercy and the seven days of creation, reminding us that the everyday tasks of ordinary life can be a made into a pathway to holiness, an opportunity to encounter and serve Christ with generosity, love, and joy: “Those with insight shall shine brightly like the splendor of the firmament, and those who lead the many to justice shall be like the stars forever.”1

The crown represents the eternal and universal rule of Christ the King, “a kingdom of truth and life, holiness and grace, justice, love and peace.”2 The encyclical inaugurating the Solemnity of Christ the King states: “When humanity recognizes, both in private and in public life, that Christ is King, society will at last receive the great blessings of real liberty, well-ordered discipline, peace and harmony.”3

Catholic social teaching is grounded on four permanent principles. “The permanent principles of the Church's social doctrine constitute the very heart of Catholic social teaching. These are the principles of: the dignity of the human person … which is the foundation of all the other principles and content of the Church's social doctrine; the common good; subsidiarity; and solidarity.”4 Representing this truth, the words Dignitas Hominis, Bonum Commune, Solidarietas, and Subsidiarietas are inscribed at each quadrant.

The principles of the Church's social doctrine must be appreciated in their unity, interrelatedness, and articulation.5 Thus, at the center, an angel, the messenger of the Lord, proclaims the principal driving force behind the authentic development of every person and of all humanity: Caritas (charity, love, agápē), reflecting the words of Saint Paul: And over all these things put on love, that is, the bond of perfection.6


1 Daniel 12:3.
2 Cf, Roman Missal, Preface, Christ, King of the Universe.
3 Pope Pius XI, Encyclical Quas Primas, 19.
4 Compendium of the Social Doctrine of the Church, 160
5 Compendium, 162.
6 Colossians 3:14.