Explanation of the Basilian Emblem
The oval-shaped crest or shield contains a pillar of fire. In the Book of Exodus (13:21), God guided His people to salvation with a fiery pillar as a beacon. St. Gregory Nanzianus compared his friend, St. Basil the Great, to a burning fire, ablaze with ardent love of God and his fellowman.
Surrounding the crest are an oak and and olive branch.
The oak represents courage, fortitude and perseverance. The olive symbolizes the peace of Christ and love of knowledge and wisdom.
The crest is surmounted with a brilliant sun, containing the Slavonic monogram for Jesus Christ— IXC (Isus Xrystos). Christ is the Light of the World (John 9:5) who enlightens every man who comes into this world (John 1:9).
Sometimes the Basilian emblem, or Blazon, contains the unofficial motto: Talis est Basilius Magnus, Such is Basil the Great— a burning fire, ablaze with Christian love and zeal for the salvation of souls.
Older versions of the Basilian blazon often contain a crown over the flaming pillar. This crown symbolizes the name of Basil (Basileus in Greek), which means king. The Troparion to the Saint refers to his royal priesthood (1 Peter 2:9), an expression also found in Basil's Eucharistic Anaphora.
The Basilian Order was traditionally known as the Order of St. Basil the Great, in Latin, Ordo Sancti Basilii Magni- OSBM; Hence the initials that Basilians sign after their names. In 1932, in order to distinguish the Ukrainian Basilians from other Basilian Orders, the Order's official name was changed to the Basilian Order of St. Josaphat (Acta Apostolicae Sedis Vol. 24 (1932) 239-240).