About Bishop Hoeppner

Omnia in Nomine Domini Iesu


Bishop Hoeppner's Coat of Arms

Bishop Hoeppner

Michael J. Hoeppner was born June 1, 1949, to Joseph and Anna Hoeppner in Winona, MN. He has three siblings: Patricia, Edward, and Mary. He attended Cathedral Grade School, Cotter High School, St. Mary's College, and Immaculate Heart of Mary Seminary, all in Winona.
Bishop Hoeppner undertook his theological studies at the Pontifical North American College in Rome, Italy, and was ordained to the priesthood for the Diocese of Winona on June 29, 1975, by Pope Paul VI at St. Peter's Basilica in Rome. He holds a degree in Sacred Theology from the Gregorian University in Rome.
In 1985, he began studying for a degree in Canon Law, and in 1987 was awarded a JCL, (Licentiate) in Canon Law from St. Paul University in Ottawa, Canada. In addition, Bishop Hoeppner has served at St. Joseph the Worker Parish and Loyola High School, Mankato; as chaplain of the Motherhouse of the School Sisters of Notre Dame and instructor at Good Counsel Academy, Mankato; was a faculty member of Immaculate Heart of Mary Seminary, Winona; principal of Pacelli High School and at Queen of Angels Parish, Austin; administrator of Queen of Peace Parish, Lyle; chaplain at Sacred Heart Hospice, Austin.
He also served as pastor of St. Vincent de Paul Parish, West Concord; pastor of St. Francis de Sales Parish, Claremont; associate pastor of St. Stanislaus Kostka Parish, Winona; pastor of St. Paul Parish, Minnesota City; pastor of St. Casimir Parish, Winona; pastor of St. Rose of Lima Parish, Lewiston and St. Anthony Parish, Altura.
For the Diocese of Winona, he has served Judicial Vicar, Director of Vocations, Director of Continuing Educaiton for hte Clergy, Moderator of the Curia (chief of staff for the diocesan bishop), and has been appointed to three, three-year terms of Vicar General of the Diocese.
In addition, he has served on the Diocesan Pastoral Council, the Presbyteral Council, the Priests Assignments Committee, the College of Consultors, the Diocesan Finance Council and the Board of Directors of Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Winona.
Bishop Hoeppner was ordained and installed as Bishop of the Diocese of Crookston on November 30, 2007.

I have chosen my motto from the third chapter of St. Paul's letter to the Colossians. In this chapter, St. Paul calls the faithful of Colossae “God's chosen people, holy and beloved.” He describes the community life these faithful have entered into through baptism. In doing so, he first lists five virtues that characterize the lives of those transformed through baptism, virtues that are to mark their life together. In their relations with one another, they are to have the “heart of compassion.” They are always to act with “humility, meekness and patience.” They are to “forgive one another…as the Lord has forgiven you.”

Paul has described these virtues as “the new garments of Christ” (v 12). He then goes on to speak of the one outer garment, the final garment that covers all the others and binds them all together. “Above all these put on charity, which is the bond of perfection” (v 14). Agape , Christian charity, love, as Jesus has shown us, is the virtue above all others by which the disciples of Jesus are known. Finally, St. Paul notes that in all their dealings with one another, they are to make the peace of Christ the standard: “may the arbiter in your midst be the peace of Christ, to whom you have been called in one body” (v 15).

How will the faithful live such a loving and peace-filled life together? St. Paul goes on to explain how. It will happen if they are always eucharistoi , thankful. They must: “let the word of Christ dwell in you in all its richness.” This word of Christ dwelling in their hearts will result in their “teaching and admonishing one
another,” helping one another to live as faithful members of the community of believers. It will lead to “singing in your hearts to God” (v 16).

Finally, in summing up, St. Paul directs the faithful to “do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus: (v 17). All thoughts, words and actions are to be done in the name of the Lord Jesus. One of the ways those in the early Church were described, in fact, was as those “who call upon the name of the Lord” (cf. Romans 10:13). Everything, now, must be done “in the name of the Lord Jesus.

The Cross - La Cruz
Below the hat above the shield, being actually placed behind the shield in what is known in heraldry as being "in pale," is found the episcopal cross. It is the hallmark of a Noonan design for each episcopal or archiepiscopal cross to be unique with each design indicative of further symbolism for the one to bear the achievement. For Bishop Hoeppner, the cross is gold and etched into the cross/transverse arm is the slight suggestion of angel's wings in the same way that subtle designs are etched into real gold
sacred vessels in the church. In other words, a suggestion of angel's wings appears on the processional cross above the shield. This represents the Archangel Michael, the patron of the bishop. At the center of this cross, where the upright and the transverse arms join, is displayed a rough cut (
cabochon ) emerald representing the "Emerald Isle" and the bishop's maternal heritage - Ireland. The staff of this cross is gold as well and falls behind the shield, re-emerging below the shield' s base.
The Shield - El Escudo
The shield is divided vertically. To the left, as one views the arms, appears the diocesan arms of Crookston, as is the custom with residential bishops in the USA . The half to the right, as one views the design, is the personal arms of the new bishop. This personal space is divided as follows:
The bar across the top of this space, known as the chief, is the place of honor in heraldry. It is worked in real liquid gold, the metal reserved for the Blessed Trinity and which is symbolic of Divine Wisdom, and as such, the wisdom that comes to the teaching office of bishop of the church. Upon this gold field appears a large X, cutting the space from edge to edge. This is the Saint Andrew Cross and honors the feast of
the Apostle Saint Andrew, the day on which Bishop Hoeppner is ordained to the episcopacy. At the center of the X, where the two crossed arms meet, appears a silver crescent, the open bowl space pointing upward. This is the universal symbol of the Immaculate Conception, the patroness of Crookston and the titular of the cathedral there in which the bishop is consecrated. All of this appears in the bar across the top of the Hoeppner portion of the shield.

The Base - La Base
The larger base of this segment of the arms is worked in heraldic blue. This also represents the Blessed Virgin Mary but as a personal homage to her by the Bishop. Two co-joined emblems appear on this space, but worked together, entwined, as one, in order to honor the deceased parents of the bishop.

Created for the first time by James-Charles Noonan, Jr., the heraldic designer, there appears a gold portcullis, the heraldic gate. This ancient gate, as seen on the drawbridges of castles in ancient architecture, is symbolic of the Blessed Virgin Mary, normally (as gate of heaven) but herein, for the first time, it represents Saint Anne, the mother of Mary. How? Saint Anne was known to have died (near to age 72 as legend has it) in a dwelling beside the Gate of the Sheep in Jerusalem and next to this gate she
is believed to have been buried. In addition, when she and Saint Joachim could not successfully bear children, Joachim left Anne for 40 days in the desert to pray for an heir. After 40 days, an angel appeared to them both to inform them that a child would be conceived. Anne was told to go out to the Golden Gate of Jerusalem to await

Joachim and it was there, when he arrived, and as they embraced, that the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary took place.For these two reasons, the Golden Gate has been selected for Bishop Hoeppner's arms but upon it is worked a sheep's head in gold to represent both the Golden Gate
of the city and the Sheep's Gate. Gold was selected for the sheep's head as silver and gold represent loyalty to the Holy See, as these metals are the colors of the Vatican State and the Holy See. Likewise, gold and silver are the only two heavenly attributes.

The gate represents not only Saint Anne, but the bishop's own mother, who was named for the mother of the Blessed Virgin Mary . Bishop Hoeppner wished most of all to represent his late mother and father in his heraldic design. As such, a special homage needed to be made to Saint Joseph of Nazareth, as the husband of the Blessed Virgin Mary was also the patron of the bishop's late father. And so, in this design, the stem or rod of Saint Joseph, common in devotional art, appears to honor both the foster father of the Lord but also the bishop's own late father. To clearly represent that these two images have become one, by virtue of impalement, the stem passes behind the gate, the rod appears below the gate and the
stem and flowers above it. The stem shall be silver. The lily atop the staff, as is proper, is to honor the bishop's paternal heritage. Below the coat of arms appears the bishop's motto:

The Motto - La Lema
The ribbon on which the motto appears is known properly as the banderole . The bishop's motto is to be framed on either side by a golden oak leaf motif. Just as the emerald in the episcopal cross represents the maternal (Irish) heritage of the bishop, so the golden oak leaves represent the bishop's paternal heritage, his father's ancestral bonds to Germany. Until 1870, modern Germany comprised nearly 300 smaller
kingdoms, principalities and duchies and so no one unified emblem existed. After the unification of Germany happened in 1870, the newly-formed nation's symbols became militaristic and therefore were inappropriate for ecclesiastical heraldry. This was rectified in the 1990s when the post-war division of Germany, East and West, ended.

Thereafter, the newly-unified nation selected the golden oak leaves as one of her symbols of unification. In this spirit, the bishop's father and paternal ancestors are honored in a special commemoration.

The Hat - Galero
The galero (an ecclesiastical hat) is in use today in ecclesiastical heraldry as part of the achievement of the coat of arms of a Roman Catholic prelate. The color of the galero and number of fiocchi (tassels) indicate the cleric's place in the hierarchy. A bishop's galero is green with six tassels per side.
An archbishop's galero is also green but has ten tassels.

Both patriarchs and cardinals have a galero with fifteen tassels; the difference being that a patriarch's is green while the cardinal's is red or scarlet. Popes do not use a galero in their personal coats of arms: rather the Papal Tiara and Keys of Saint Peter are used.

The circular galero surmounts the shield and the processional cross that in heraldry is properly known as the episcopal cross. The interior of the galero is properly rendered in scarlet. Tassels adorn the brim and fall from stylized knots made of cording of the same color.

1200 Memorial Drive  Crookston MN 56716  218-281-4533