Leaders are called to higher virtue

November 4, 2013

Colonel John Walter Ripley, USMC

Colonel John Walter Ripley, USMC

For these [leadership] characters to be truly representative, they cannot be just good administrators. They must practice not only common virtue but the extraordinary valor found in those who sacrifice for the common good. It is especially found in those who love their neighbor for the love of God when practicing Christian charity.

We might use the comparison of the Ten Commandments that all must practice and the voluntary evangelical counsels of poverty, chastity, and obedience only for those who seek greater perfection. Our representative characters must practice not just common civic virtue, but a higher degree of civic virtue with the same spirit of detachment, self-sacrifice, and perfection as those who follow the counsels. Society has a natural intuition for these authentic figures, which helps explain their ability to attract. That is why figures like dedicated military officers, self-sacrificing religious leaders, devoted teachers, or selfless statesmen are the stuff of which heroes and legends are made.

“Be a man of principle. Fight for what you believe in. Keep your word. Live with integrity. Be brave. Believe in something bigger than yourself. Serve your country. Teach. Mentor. Give something back to society. Lead from the front. Conquer your fears. Be a good friend. Be humble and be self-confident. Appreciate your friends and family. Be a leader and not a follower. Be valorous on the field of battle. And take responsibility for your actions. Never forget those that were killed. And never let rest those that killed them.” Maj. Douglas A. Zembiec, USMC, also known as the "Lion of Fallujah" and the "Unapologetic Warrior".

“Be a man of principle. Fight for what you believe in. Keep your word. Live with integrity. Be brave. Believe in something bigger than yourself. Serve your country. Teach. Mentor. Give something back to society. Lead from the front. Conquer your fears. Be a good friend. Be humble and be self-confident. Appreciate your friends and family. Be a leader and not a follower. Be valorous on the field of battle. And take responsibility for your actions. Never forget those that were killed. And never let rest those that killed them.” Maj. Douglas A. Zembiec, USMC, also known as the “Lion of Fallujah” and the “Unapologetic Warrior”.

Above all, these representative figures serve to set the tone and harmonize society. By their influence, they shape the demand, fashions, and trends of the day—even more effectively than advertising.

John Horvat II, Return to Order: From a Frenzied Economy to an Organic Christian Society—Where We’ve Been, How We Got Here, and Where We Need to Go (York, Penn.: York Press, 2013), 202.

 

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