The symbols, the motto and the colours of our seal were:
chosen by Mother Bruyère in 1852
designed and coloured by Sir G. Smith
The design which was engraved in Paris in 1852 was delivered by Reverend Father Reboul, OMI, on June 8, 1853.
The official seal of the Sisters of Charity of Ottawa (SCO) is a symbol which identifies the spirituality which Mother Bruyère left in legacy to her daughters who perpetuate her mission to this day.
The raised cross recalls the two feasts of the Institute:
the Invention and the Exaltation of the Holy Cross, on September 14
the morning hymn: Hail, Holy Cross, our only hope… O Crux Ave, spes unica!... (SCO Constitutions of 1889)
The heraldic expression of the sable (black) cross with a red (gules) heart evokes sacrifice to the point of immolation in union with the Heart of Jesus. Jesus is our Leader… "You will need to make your last sacrifice on the altar of the Cross" given by Bishop Joseph Eugène Bruno Guigues, OMI, during a ceremony of profession.
The ivy intertwined around the cross is a symbol of our weakness supported by the tree of salvation.
The rock wherein the Cross is planted represents the stability of the Institute.
The letters VJ and SC represent the motto Hail to Jesus and His Cross which was given to the Grey Nuns of Bytown by Bishop Eugène Bruno Guigues, on September 4, 1852.
The streamers are blue in honour of Mary Immaculate, whom we venerate as the first Superior.
The inscriptionsI was sick and you visited me; I am the strength of the weak express the works entrusted to our Congregation: the educational mission and the service to the poor.
God’s will has nourished my life and rooted me in Bytown.
Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path.
Jesus is on every shore where the eyes of faith can see him.