The Salvatorian College opened its doors in 1926, in the month of September, to a mere handful of pupils. By the end of the following year its numbers had so increased that, in order to strengthen interest and engender a healthy spirit of competition, it was decided to divide the boys in "House" groupings. Two houses were envisaged and after some consideration the names chosen for the first two houses of the school were, Francis and Gabriel. Francis was chosen in honour of the Servant of God, the Venerable Father Francis Mary of the Cross, Founder of the Society of the Divine Saviour. Gabriel was chosen in honour of the Archangel Gabriel, the Patron of Very Rev. Fr. Gabriel S.D.S., who was the founder of the school.
Increase in numbers necessitated the formation of a further two houses Becket, in honour of the martyred Archbishop of Canterbury, St. Thomas a Becket; Campion in honour of Blessed Edmund Campion the great convert and martyr of Reformation times. These four houses fulfilled their function admirably. A spirit of competition, fellowship, loyalty and self-sacrifice was engendered and every boy, no matter where his talents lay, had the chance to shine by his industry and effort and so enhance the prestige of his house. After a further lapse of time, badges and mottoes, in addition to those of the school, were introduced for each house.
House of Francis: a gold Jerusalem Cross on a black field with the motto "Quem Timebo".
House of Gabriel: a gold,- crowned and rampant lion on a royal blue field with the motto "Potens Virtute".
House of Becket: an Archbishop's cross and a pallium on a green ground with the family motto of the Beckets "A Becket".
House of Campion: a red, wild campion on a white ground over the motto "Floreat Campiona".
For the House of Francis, the Jerusalem cross was chosen because the Founder of the Salvatorians had been inspired to found his Society while on a visit to the Holy Land. The motto is taken from the first verse of Psalm XXVI "The Lord is my light and my salvation, whom shall I fear?"
For the House of Gabriel, the messenger of the Incarnation, the golden lion is Our Lord, the lion of the tribe of Judah, crowned to denote the Kingship of Christ, while the field is blue to symbolize Our Lady. The motto is from the Mass of the Angels and signifies " mighty in manliness or "great in virtue".
For the House of Becket the device is the Cross and Pallium of an Archbishop and the motto is the Becket family battle-cry.
Finally the flower in the Campion badge is suggested by the name Campion; it is red for the martyr; it is taken from the "campion" a flower that gave its name to the word "champion", in olden times victors in open-air contests were said to have been crowned with a wreath of campions. The motto means "Long may Campion flourish".
Besides the badges and mottoes the distinctive colours of the houses - gold, royal blue, green and red -were worn by the boys in their inter- house games. Generations of boys have been inspired by the four houses and their patrons, and in order to make the houses still more firmly part of the school, the old school crest of SDS interwoven with a cross was recently abandoned in favour of a shield. This shield shows in its four quarters the badges of the four houses, retaining the school motto "DEO DUCE". in a scroll. The new school badge keeps the red cross, a symbol of our salvation, while superimposed on the cross is a fish, the ancient Christian symbol for Christ. (The Greek word for fish is ICHTHUS and each letter of the word is taken from IESOUS KRISTOS THEOU UIOS SOTER, which mean - Jesus Christ, Son of God and Saviour).
Containing as it does the symbolic resume of the history of the school since its inception and enshrining all the loyalties and aspirations of past and present pupils, we feel that the new school badge will afford both pleasure and inspiration not only to the boys who wear it but to the parents who provide it. Such symbolism is not a mere empty gesture, it is a constant reminder that with- out the Christian ideals enshrined therein none of us, especially the youth can find inspiration and happiness.
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