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Most Reverend William McGrattan

Regional Bishop’s Office - Central Pastoral Region
1155 Yonge Street, 5th Floor
Toronto, Ontario M4T 1W2

Phone - 416-934-3400 ext. 507
Fax - 416-934-3445

Bishop William T. McGrattan is Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Toronto with responsibility for the Central Region. Bishop McGrattan was born in London, Ontario. He first completed an undergraduate degree in Chemical Engineering (B.E.Sc.), then a Masters of Divinity degree (M.Div) before being ordained to the priesthood in 1987 for the Diocese of London. After serving for three years at St. Joseph’s parish in Chatham he went on for further studies in Rome, completing a Licentiate in Fundamental Moral Theology from the Gregoriana University in 1992. He served on the faculty of St. Peter’s Seminary in London from 1992 to 2009 as associate professor, vice-rector, and dean of theology in addition to being a lecturer at King’s University College at the University of Western Ontario. In 1997 he was appointed rector of the seminary and served in this role until 2009. In addition to his episcopal responsibilities within the Archdiocese he is also Vicar for Lay Movements / Associations and Vicar for Ethnic Communities. Bishop McGrattan is currently a member of the Doctrine Commission for the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops (CCCB) and the liaison bishop to the Catholic Health Alliance of Canada. He also serves on the Education Commission for the Assembly of Catholic Bishops of Ontario (ACBO) and is their liaison to the Catholic School Chaplains, Religious and Family Life Educators and a board member of the Catholic Health Association of Ontario.  

Explanation of the Coat of Arms for Bishop William McGrattan

The field of the shield is divided into sections by a heraldic division called a saltire enhanced. This reflects the form of the traditional arms of the name McGrattan. In the “X” is also seen the Greek letter Chi which is the first letter in the Greek for Christ.

The colours used may be taken to represent the following:
Gold (yellow) and red from the shield used by St Peter's Seminary, London, Ontario.
Red and blue from the shield used by the City of London, Ontario.

The charges on the shield symbolize the following:


Keys are found in the coats of arms of the Bishop's home diocese of London and in the shield used by St Peter's Seminary where he ministered as an educator and served as rector for many years. A key opens a lock and so is a fitting symbol for education and here celebrates the Bishop's role in the training of priests at St Peter's Seminary. Keys are also an attribute of St Peter (Matthew 16.19) and so may be taken to represent the papacy and the Roman Catholic Church. In this instance the wards and the bows have been embellished with the traditional emblem of Ireland, the trefoil or shamrock, and indicates the Bishop's ancestry and heritage. The trefoil is also a symbol for the Holy Trinity.


The lower section is in blue a colour associated with theology and bears a shell. The shell is significant in that it is an emblem of Holy Baptism the sacrament which incorporates one into Christ and his Church and which is the basis of all ministry. As a baptismal symbol it represents the Church's mission. Here it is also a reference to the Bishop's mother as shells are found in many arms associated with the name Power in Ireland. A shell is the main feature of the shield of Pope Benedict XVI who appointed the Bishop to the episcopate. The shell is also the badge of pilgrims and here speaks of the Christian's life journey in faith.

Basket with Loaves

The basket filled with loaves speaks of the sacrament of the Holy Eucharist, the Church's highest offering. Bread has ever been a symbol of the means of sustaining life and in the Old Testament it was a symbol of God's providence, care and nurture of his people.(Exodus 16.15) Jesus gave new meaning to this symbolism when he said, “I am the bread of life.” (John 6.35) and again at the Last Supper as a reference to his sacrifice.(Luke 22.19). It is also used here as a reflection of the feeding of the great throng of people (Matthew 14.15-21) and so represents the call to compassion, hospitality, outreach, caring, and to what Pope John Paul II spoke of in terms of what the significance of Jesus' action in this instance should mean to bishops and their ministry.


The upper section is coloured red, the colour of the Holy Spirit, of love and zeal. Upon this is set a pattern formed of seven heraldic charges called mascules [ a diamond shape with the centre omitted ]. This symbol is the emblem attributed to a medieval bishop of York, England, Saint William of York (William Fitzherbert) and hence is a reference to the Bishop's baptismal name. The seven mascules may represent the seven gifts of the Spirit.

The Motto

The motto HABE FIDUCIAM IN DOMINO placed below the shield is from Proverbs 3.5: “Habe fiduciam in Domino ex toto corde tuo et ne innitaris prudentiae tuae.” (Trust in the Lord with all your heart and do not rely on your own insight).

The external symbols of a processional cross (here depicted as a celtic cross with jewels representing the wounds of Christ) and a green ecclesiastical hat with two green cords each ending in six green tassels are the insignia appropriate to a Roman Catholic Bishop as assigned by Pope Paul VI in his special Instruction of 31 March 1969.


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