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The Stories of Our New Logo

08.12.19 | Weekly updates | by Fr. Andrew Van Kirk

The Stories of Our New Logo

    St. Andrew was the first of the apostles called by Jesus. Like his brother St. Peter, St. Andrew was a fisherman before Jesus called him to be a “fisher of men.” St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church in McKinney (the sibling of the other large Episcopal church in town, St. Peter’s) has always drawn inspiration from the gospel stories of our patron saint and the missional call Jesus gave to him.

    St. Andrew's Old Logo

    For as long as there has been a St. Andrew’s, we have tried to incorporate this spiritual identity into our visual identity. Our first logo consisted of a cross made up of swooping “fishing hooks” or “fishing nets;” our key color has always been the blue of sea; even the great quilt that served as our original altar backdrop was made of blues and purples, many panels with net designs applied over them.

    St. Andrew's New Logo

    In this new logo for St. Andrew’s, we aim to build on those associations. We’re not trying to do a new thing, so much as do the same thing in a new, and clearer, way.

    At the center of this new logo is a bright blue fish, often called by its Greek name, ichthys. It’s the same symbol people put on the back of their cars or on a chain around their neck to proclaim their Christian faith, and it’s one of the oldest symbols representing Christ. The fish has been used since at least the 2nd century, predating even the use of the cross as a common Christian symbol. The Greek letters that make up ichthys form an acrostic — the first letters of Greek words for “Jesus Christ, Son of God, Savior” spell ichthys.

    So the fish at the heart of our logo proclaims Christ at the heart of our faith and life together as St. Andrew’s. In Christian history the fish has also been symbolic of both the Eucharist and the newly baptized, and since we are sacramental church these additional layers of meaning are particularly fitting.

    Using crop and color, the fish is brought out of a series of overlapping curves called the triqueta, a symbol of the Trinity: Father, Son and Holy Spirit. There are three lobes of the triqueta, each distinct but not separate from the others, just as there are three persons of the Trinity, each distinct but not separable from the others. So this new logo points at the fullness of our faith in God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

    The white lines that comprise the ichthys and triqueta within the logo make up a stylized fisherman’s net, reminding us of St. Andrew our patron saint, and encouraging thanksgiving that we have been “caught” by Christ and brought into community together.

    All the text is set in Garamond, which is the font of The Book of Common Prayer. This is a nod to our beautiful Episcopal tradition and a reminder that, new logo or not, our parish is connected to the much larger Church of Christ, spread across the world and across time. And that is our most important identity.

    Our tagline, “A faith for all ages,” remains unchanged and remains at the heart of what we’re about. St. Andrew’s is a church where everyone, no matter how old or young, can know that church is for them.

    The elements of this new logo invite us to tell the story of what draws us to follow the call of our Lord, just like St. Andrew did so many centuries before.