The episcopal heraldic achievement, or bishop’s coat of arms, is composed of a shield, which is the central and most important part of the design, a scroll with a motto and the external ornamentation. The design is described (blazoned) as if the description was being given by the bearer (from behind) with the shield being worn on the left arm.
These arms are composed of a blue field on which are placed a silver (white) anchor and a silver (white) estoile (multi-point star). The anchor, the symbol of the State of Rhode Island and of its motto “Hope,” has the uppermost arm from the Greek letter Rho (P) which, in combination with regular cross-arms forms the combined letters Chi-Rho (XP) that are the representation of Christ.
The symbolism of this anchor is magnified by Bishop Evans’ motto, “SPE SALVI,” the title of an encyclical by our Holy Father, Pope Benedict XVI, which translated means; “SAVED IN HOPE.” Thus, Christ is the security; the anchor, . . . in whom we trust; in whom we hope, . . . for salvation and Eternal Life.
Also displayed in Bishop Evans’ design, in the upper right, (“to chief sinister”) is a multi-pointed star called “an estoile.” The position of this star is to liken The North Star, the navigational aid of the Northern Hemisphere, and it is “upon a sea of blue,” to honor the Most Blessed Virgin Mary in her title of “Star of the Sea.”
In this title, Mary is the Patroness of the Pontifical North American College in Rome where His Excellency, Bishop Evans was a student and then later served as an administrator.
As a navigational aid, this star, Mary, the Star of the Sea, is the guide to the redemption that is Christ the anchor and the hope of humanity.
The achievement is completed by the external ornamentation which are a gold (yellow) processional cross that is placed in back of the shield and which extends above and below the shield, and the pontifical hat, called a “galero,” with its six tassels in three rows on either side of the shield, all in green.