The crescent moon represents the Virgin Mary, mother of Christ, “clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet.” As the Immaculate Conception, she is patroness of the Diocese of Fort Wayne-South Bend, and its cathedral in Fort Wayne.
The three crosses represent the Blessed Trinity. The Father sent the Son into the world; the Son sent the Spirit. It was this mission of Son and Spirit through missionaries that brought this diocese into being.
The crosses replace swords on the family crest of General Anthony Wayne, the founder of the fort that grew into the See City of Fort Wayne.
The fortified wall represents Fort Wayne.
The six-winged seraph symbolizes the inspired word of God. St. Matthew is one of the inspired evangelists who recorded this Word. Thus the angel identifies the patron of the cathedral in South Bend. The river bend is expressed in heraldry by a wavy line. This represents the See City of South Bend.
The fleur-de-lis is the lily, symbol of purity and of the chaste foster father of Christ, St. Joseph. It indicates the locale of the See City â€” the St. Joseph River and valley, and St. Joseph County. As the lily of France, it recalls the colonization of this region by French Catholics.