Pectoral Good Shepherd Cross of Pope Francis

31 Aug


It has been customary for a new pope to be given a cross of gold, often encrusted with jewels. Pope Francis has broken with this tradition by refusing a new cross in favor of one that he has worn and cherished for many years.


Pope Francis wears a cross which was given to him in 1998 when he became Archbishop of Buenos Aires. Designed by Antonio Veldele, this silver cross has become known as the Good Shepherd Cross. The Holy Spirit is shown at the top. At the center is Jesus, the Good Shepherd. The flock of sheep on the cross bar represents Jesus’ followers. Jesus holds one lamb in His arms symbolizing His protection. This scene represents the biblical passage, “I am the Good Shepherd; the Good Shepherd lays down His life for His sheep”.

The cross worn by Pope Francis is referred to as a pectoral cross, meaning that it is worn on the chest. Smaller versions have been created and used on rosaries.


The cross shown above is made in Italy. In the United States, it is sold by the Catholic Faith Store. Collectors will note that it comes in a case bearing the words, ” CITTA’ DEL VATICANO”.


The Pectoral Cross of Pope Francis is quickly becoming a favorite of those who respect the work of Pope Francis.

To learn more about unique crosses, crucifixes, center medals, and rosaries, read The Rosary Collector’s Guide by Gloria Brady Hoffner and Helen Hoffner. This 152 page hardback reference book has 240 color photographs and helps collectors and antique dealers learn more about unique religious articles. It is available at the Catholic Faith Store, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and other book stores and religious article stores.

Helen Hoffner and Gloria Brady Hoffner, authors of The Rosary Collector’s Guide, are often able to bring their collection to show to church groups, school groups, and community organizations. To arrange a presentation or ask a question about religious articles, contact them at




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