Coat-of-Arms | Bishop-emeritus Edward R. Adams

Biskop Adams se persoonlike wapenskild

Diocese of Oudtshoorn
Bisdom Oudtshoorn

Patron: The Immaculate Heart of Mary
Patroon: Die Onbevlekte Hart van Maria

Suffragan Diocese of the Province of Cape Town - Republic of South Africa
Suffragane Bisdom van die Provinsie Kaapstad - Republiek van Suid-Afrika

AN EXPLANATION of the Coat-Of-Arms the Right Reverend Bishop Edward R. Adams, Lord Bishop-emeritus of Oudtshoorn.


1. THE BISHOP'S HAT, with cords and six tassels on either side, is the exclusive sign that he is a bishop of the Holy Roman Catholic Church in South Africa. No other bishop (or archbishop) of the Anglican or Orthodox Churches, nor of the many “Episcopalian” sects in Europe, America or world-wide, is entitled to display this “Episcopal Hat” in his armorial bearings.

2. THE EPISCOPAL OR PROCESSIONAL CROSS. This again denotes the Bishop’s rank as an “episcopus” of the one and only true Catholic Faith.

3. The main elements (or “charges” as they are called in heraldry) of the coat-of-arms, are those displayed on the SHIELD. They are as follows:

a. THE ANVIL AND HAMMER. These are the personal emblems of Bishop Adams, as they refer to the fact that, in his youth, he was an apprenticed blacksmith, and later, a fully-qualified wheelwright. However, they also have a spiritual and biblical significance, and are the signs of brotherly co-operation, mutual love, and encouragement to all who work together for Christ — and that everyone should help his neighbour. This we know by reading from Isaiah 41:6-7 “Men help one another, they say to each other, ‘Take heart!’ The craftsman encourages the goldsmith; the man who beats out with the hammer encourages the man who strikes the anvil. Of the soldering he says: it is sound’.

b. THE THURIBLE OR CENSOR, with the clouds of incense ascending upwards to heaven. As all Catholics know, this denotes prayer to the Almighty Father; in particular, they signify Bishop Adams’ own personal devotion to, and belief in the efficacy of prayer. It is also a sign that all the faithful who have had the privilege of knowing and loving the Bishop personally, send their prayers to God and to Our Blessed Lady, on his behalf.

c. THE OSTRICH FEATHERS are primarily a reference (and compliment) to the Diocese, District and Town of Oudtshoorn; but even they have scriptural and spiritual significance, because they remind us that God gives to all his creatures, according to their needs — not only to man, but to the beasts of the field, the birds of the air, the fishes of the ocean. We are reminded of this by reading from Job 39:12-14 “Can the wing of the ostrich be compared with the plumage of the stork or the falcon. She leaves her eggs on the ground with only the earth to warm them.”

4. The personal motto of Bishop Adams, which appears on the scroll beneath the shield, is “SEMPER UTIQUE” - this is capable of several interpretations, but those who know him will perhaps think that it means that Bishop Adams is “always ready”, always prepared, to be of use and service to Our Divine Lord, Our Blessed Lady and to all his brothers and sisters in Christ.

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