Crest & Motto

The crest of the Katholische Hochschule ITI is rich in symbolism. The motto of the Katholische Hochschule ITI, “Sicut cervus ad fontes,” is taken from Psalm 42. “As a deer longs for sources of water, so my soul longs for you, O God. My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. When shall I come and see the face of God?” (Psalm 42,2-3). The deer in the crest is drinking from the sources, just as our students “drink” from the primary sources written by the great masters of the theological tradition, from the Fathers of the Church to the present age. All of this is set within the symbol of the Papacy. Our degrees are granted by the Holy See and this “thirsting” and search for truth is set within the heart of the Catholic Church, faithful to the teaching of the Magisterium.

Sicut cervus ad fontes

Psalm 42
Verse 1 “As a deer longs for sources of water, so my soul longs for you, O God.” Verse 2 “My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. When shall I come and see the face of God?”

Two main ideas are expressed in these verses:
(a) Thirst
(b) a source; what one turns to if one is really thirsty and wants a long drink.

a) Thirst 
This thirst is the innermost energy of what the Old and the New Testament calls the “heart.” It is the very center of the human person, where his deepest longings abide. St. Augustine’s maxim is pertinent here: “You have made us toward yourself, O God, and our hearts are restless until they rest in you.”

The human heart is an aspect of the love of which the Shema commandment speaks, “Hear, O Israel: The LORD is our God, the LORD alone. You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your might” (Deut 6:4-5).  

God’s life is a source/spring of water that quenches the desires of the human heart: 

 “Those who drink of the water that I will give them will never be thirsty. The water that I will give will become in them a spring of water gushing up to eternal life” (John 4:14).

b) Sources: the source/spring present in Christ:

"On the last day of the feast, the great day, Jesus stood up and proclaimed, 'If any one thirst, let him come to me and drink. He who believes in me, as the scripture has said, "Out of his heart shall flow rivers of living water."' Now this he said about the Spirit, which those who believed in him were to receive; for as yet the Spirit had not been given, because Jesus was not yet glorified" (John 7:37-39).

Where does this water flow for us? How do we come to stand “under the spout where the glory comes out”?

It is through the body Christ left us, his own body, by which he is present to us. The life of the Church as a whole is primary. The particular aspect of thought and knowledge, which is the goal of theology -  Scripture, the Fathers, the doctors, the saints - these are sources of theology in the strict sense that theology would not exist without them.

The depth of some texts comes from being touched by God’s Spirit. These texts are sources both in the sense of a richness of meaning and in the sense of giving rise to thought. They take the place of lectures, place of systematic learning. It is important to adjust your expectations and set sufficient time apart to read, to ask questions, and to discuss.