Mater Dei Logo Portrait HIGH cropped

Name, Motto & Crest


Mary, MATER DEI, The Mother of God, occupies a unique place in the history of salvation and therefore of the Church.

She has always received particular honour within the Church because of this unique role.

The College has chosen Mary as its patroness in order to continue this tradition and in the confident hope that Mary will guide and help its community in living out the Gospel values of her Son.


Within the motto we have tried to capture something of the essence of the life of Mary. At the same time we wished the motto to encapsulate a message or theme on which our youngsters can base their approach to life.

Mary is the supreme example for the human race of a faith filled response to the Word of God. In effect, by her actions, she accepted the gift of SALVATION on behalf of the human race. It is most likely that she did so in confusion and lack of full understanding. In this context the strength and depth of her FAITH is all the more remarkable. 

Mary's faith continued to develop throughout her life and did so at times in the face of great personal sadness and difficulty. She showed great COURAGE in holding onto and being open to the growth of her faith. Many of us have faith but sometimes lack the courage to fully live it out.

Thus we hope and pray that all within the Mater Dei Community will strive to emulate Mary in the manner in which she responded to God's gift of Faith and in the Courage she displayed in living it out.

We believe that the theme of the Motto is applicable to all our lives in a variety of ways. Mater Dei College believes in the dignity and the nurturing of the individual and seeks to follow, with courage, Mary’s example of faith.


The Graphic Artist who designed the crest explains the ideas behind the design as follows:

"The brief for Mater Dei College was to design a Crest that would present the image of Mary as a model of great strength and faith for young people. The crest was to depict Mary as a human being first and foremost and not some ethereal being above and beyond us. She was and is one of us. She experienced all the joys and tribulations of life as we do.

The crest of Mater Dei must reflect the essence of Mary's religious relevance to the Catholic Church. In addition it must be able to instantly identify a College committed to Christian ideals. The crest must be relevant to the 21st Century and therefore the design must contain an element of timelessness.


The arch was chosen as the basic format for the crest as this shape has an historical connection with images of Mary in the history of Western Art. This reference to the traditions of church iconography provides a link with the history of the Church.

The crucifix is the essential icon of Christianity and, therefore, its inclusion in the design was deemed essential. However it was important that it did not interfere with the image of Mary. The solution was to combine the arc of Mary's halo with the horizontal line of the cross. A curve is created which gives the image a strong, dynamic quality which should reflect the energy of a secondary College.

The face of Mary is one of the most important aspects of the design. The face in the crest needs to convey not only Mary's faith and courage but also her humanity. The face is in profile and inclined upwards which communicates her relationship with God. The image is intended to be young and beautiful but not overly feminine. There is an ordinariness about the face which conveys her humanity. The simplicity of the silhouette conveys a feeling of gentle strength. It is hoped that this is an image that both male and female students can relate to."