Symbols of the Gospels on La Trinidad UMC

Today I noticed for the first time that the main doors to La Trinidad UMC have wooden symbols of the Gospels on them. I took some pictures to share:

St. Matthew = human/angel

St. Matthew = human/angel

St. Luke = wined calf

St. Luke = wined calf

St. Mark = winged lion

St. Mark = winged lion

St. John = eagle

St. John = eagle

On pp. 23-26 of Francis Watson's Gospel Writing: A Canonical Perspective he discusses these symbols. He states that the earliest depiction of the Gospels, which borrows imagery from Revelation 4:6-7, and are based on the opening lines of the Gospels, derives from the writings of Irenaeus of Lyon: 

In Irenaeus, the human figure is associated with Matthew, the eagle with Mark, the calf with Luke, and the lion with John.
— Watson, Gospel Writing (p. 24)

Watson shares that Augustine of Hippo continued using these images, but he went a different direction that Ireneaus:

In a second version of the scheme, which Augustine prefers, Matthew is connected with the lion, Mark with the human figure, Luke with the calf, and John with the eagle. Augustine criticizes the first version on the grounds that its advocates ‘based their conjecture only on the beginnings of the books, not on the evangelists’ entire scope [non de tota intentione evangelistarum], which is what really needed to be investigated.’
— Watson, Gospel Writing (p. 24)

Watson affirms Augustine's rational for departing from Irenaeus:

This is a valid criticism of Irenaeus, whose equations are all based on the openings of the respective gospels: the lion-like confidence of “In the beginning was the Word . . .” (John); the figure of Zacharias the priest, potentially associated with a sacrificial calf (Luke); the humanity emphasized by Jesus’ genealogy (Matthew); and the introductory Isaiah citation that evokes “the winged aspect of the gospel” (Mark). Augustine argues that the symbolic connections should seek to account for the whole of each gospel — although in practice he does not fully develop this point.
— Watson, Gospel Writing (pp. 24-25)

I highly recommend the whole discussion, but I'll let you read it. What I want to highlight is how our congregation's building mixes the older imagery of Irenaeus with the revised of Augustine. I don't know the rational for this. The congregation has been in existence since 1876. Our current building's cornerstone dates to 1921. We are part of the Methodist tradition and our congregation has been distinctly Latino all these years. If any of this factors into the decision to use the mixed imagery, and someone knows why, let me know. 

Irenaeus

Mt. = human

Mk. = eagle

Lk. = calf

Jn. = lion

La Trinidad UMC

Mt. = human

Mk. = lion

Lk. = calf

Jn. = eagle

Augustine

Mt. = lion

Mk. = human

Lk. = calf

Jn. = eagle