The word “leader” began to be used more often in the Spanish language during the 20th century. For some Spaniards it was a welcomed addition that allowed them to avoid the original word “caudillo” forever associated with Francisco Franco through stamps, coinage, and endless repetition. In my mind I associate the word with the Germanic idea of Fuherprinzip and all the unhappy memories forever attached to it. For the word caudillo is a diminutive and its root, capitellus, the Latin word for “top,” is more passive and not as Wagnerian as its German counterpart. It also reminds us of cauda, another Latin word meaning “tail” which is what those following the leader get to see the most.
Recently I heard a few Christian friends of mine express their desire for the emergence of a modern Charles Martel, a Christian leader that can show us the way out of this mess. I believe those men and women yearning for the former Christian order had enough already of the Liberal disorder. With “Liberal” I include Big Business, Big Government, Liberal Capitalism, Socialism, Communism, Fascism, and any other “ism” that may arise in the future proposing the abolition of man, the supreme sacrifice of everything at any cost to achieve peace, security, prosperity, porn, video games, and television.
I do not think an authentic Christian would like to lead the current reality show, this “Planet of the Freaks” that more than slouching is careening towards Gomorrah headfirst. Examine the Christian leaders of the past, like St. Peter. As soon as poor Peter had tasted the heights of divine approval, getting a new name and being put “in charge” of a global mission; he was thrown in the cold waters of divine disapproval and was called nothing less than “Satan.” He is not depicted in the Gospels as the square-jawed, sure of himself, fearless leader, electrifying the Christian masses into action, making history. No, he who was not a scholar was made a teacher; he who dived into the shadows at the first sign of trouble, was inspired to valiantly recriminate the people Jerusalem for having killed the Christ; he who leaned towards the judaizers in the Church, was called to witness to the first pagan converts, welcoming them into the Church. In Scripture we see sometimes the real Peter failing miserably, other times we see him walking unfailingly with God. Peter’s life is a parable for mankind showing us how we look when we act on our own, and how we shine when God is with us no matter how talentless we may be.
In those old neoclassical Communist paintings, Stalin was depicted riding a white horse, sword in hand, fighting in battles where he never was; credited with things like discovering electricity, and inventing the light bulb for the good of the Soviet masses. That was the Communist iconography. Peter was instead pictured in the Gospel as an insecure man far from being a model of a worldly Führer. We find the reason why in 1 Corinthians 1:27:
“But the foolish things of the world hath God chosen, that he may confound the wise; and the weak things of the world hath God chosen, that he may confound the strong.”
The problems of this world are now too far advanced to be resolved by force or politics and they will have to run their course. Today the worldly poison has invaded even the Church and one wonders not “what are we going to do if Christ returns in this age?” but rather “what are we going to do if Christ does not return in this age!” Read this quote from Fr. Julio Meinvielle (1905-1973):
“The error of Progressivism resides in rejecting the necessity of working for the implantation of a Christian social order. In doing so they are obliged to accept the lay city, Liberal, Socialist, Communist. The root of their error and their deviation from Christian progress lies in seeking the alliance of the Church with modernity.”
As I write this article that blinding smoke has covered the globe and it seems to be reaching the very halls of the curia. If even Christian leaders have succumbed to the ways of the world, what is one supposed to do? The first order of the day should be to get a hold of the situation with as much accuracy as possible.
The quote below is from Fr. Julio Meinvielle’s book From the Kabala to Progressivism. It sounds strangely prophetic. From this passage I deduct that the duty of a Christian leader today is to prepare the people of the Church for the inevitable reconstruction that will soon follow after the collapse of the current Liberal “order” instead of trying to whip the current mess into some sort of half-functional Gomorrah. The old popular wisdom applies here: “You can’t fix stupid.” We may have arrived to that point in History. Read carefully how Fr. Meinvielle describes the situation hypothetically back in 1970. I for one find it quite prophetic:
“It boggles the mind to attempt comprehension of how the promises of assistance to the Church by the Divine Spirit in this cabbalistic era are going to be fulfilled, and how it will come to pass that “the gates of Hell shall not prevail.” But just as the Church began as the smallest of the seeds and became a huge tree, in the same manner she can be reduced in size and acquire a more modest shape. We know that the mystery of iniquity is already at work but we do not know the full extent of its power. However there is no difficulty in admitting that the Church in public view can be conquered by the enemy thus converting from Catholic Church to Agnostic Church. There could be two churches: one in public view, a Church magnified in propaganda, with well advertised bishops, priests, and theologians even with a Pope with ambiguous attitudes; and another Church, a church of silence with a Pope faithful to Jesus Christ in his teaching and with some loyal priests, bishops, and faithful spread about as pusillus grex (little flock) all around the earth. This second church would be the Church of the promises while the other defects or apostatizes. The same Pope could preside both churches that would seem to be one in appearance. The Pope with his ambiguous attitudes would validate the confusion. Because on one hand — being the head of the Church of Promises — he may profess an impeccable doctrine while on the other hand, by sending confusing, even reproachable signals, he would appear to be advancing the subversion and pastoral message of the “public” Church. The possibility we propose here has not been studied enough by ecclesiology. But if we look at it thoroughly we shall see that the promise of assistance [by the Holy Spirit] to the Church is limited to [a] avoiding the introduction of errors in the Roman See and in the very Church and [b] that the Church shall not perish or be completely destroyed by her enemies. None of those promises contained in the Gospel is invalidated by the hypothesis hereby proposed. On the contrary both hypothesis gain feasibility if we consider the scriptural passages that refer to the great apostasy. Such defection will be complete but must coincide with the perseverance of the Church until the end. Our Lord is quoted in the Gospel asking “But when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on earth?” (Luke 18:8.) Saint Paul in 2 Thessalonians 2:3 calls that defection of the faith a universal apostasy that will coincide in time with the manifestation of the “man of wickedness, the son of perdition.” That universal apostasy is the total secularization of public and private life that is proceeding apace in today’s world. The only alternative to the Antichrist shall be Christ, and Christ will dissolve the Antichrist with His Breath thus fulfilling the final act of liberating History. Mankind will not remain alienated under the evil one. It has not been announced that Christ will save the masses though He shall save His Church, the “little flock” (Luke 2:32) for it is the Father’s good pleasure to give them the kingdom.” 
I do not presume to complete the thoughts of a powerful theologian like Fr. Meinvielle, author of many excellent books that have been much unjustly maligned by critics that cannot hold a candle to him. I just thought, now with the benefit of hindsight, that Our Lord promised Saint Peter that He was going to pray for Peter’s faith. That passage in Luke 22:31 reads: “Simon, Simon, Satan has asked to sift all of you as wheat. But I have prayed for you, Simon, that your faith may not fail.” That was the moment Jesus gave Peter and his successors the charism they hold until this day for “The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective” (James 5:16) and certainly there is no one more perfectly righteous than Our Lord whose prayers are now perfectly effective too.
In these days, just as it happened in Peter’s day, we may see clearly how the Holy Spirit guides the Holy Father through wicked and confusing times. Just like in the beginning the Spirit of God “hovers over the waters” ordering a chaotic world and giving life to the faithful even when it seems that the forces of darkness appear to be ready to thwart God’s purpose. So the Church may be confounded but never teach a lie, the Holy Father may not know what to do and still be guided ever so gently by the Holy Spirit. Our God remains in control and not one of His sheep will be lost.
These are times to remember the counsel of a great saint and fighter, Saint Pio of Pietrelcina (Padre Pio) who used to say: “Hope, pray, and don’t worry.”
What can we do in the meanwhile? We must show faith by engaging now more than ever in evangelical activity. If we cannot do it for lack of time or talent, we can support those who do it faithfully. If that is not possible we should always pray for those who are faithfully feeding the flock of Christ. We should also be prepared to rebuild the world. Remember that “nothing will go to waste” (John 6:12) Our Lord is not in the habit of wasting the talents He has given us. When the Roman Empire collapsed, it was left to the Christians to rebuild upon the ruins of the ancient order. The same is about to happen now. No matter how bad things get — and things may get really scary — we have to lift our heads up and act like people that know the precious price that Christ paid for our freedom. Free people do not fear but hope and prepare for the future because the future is guaranteed for them: “for it is the Father’s good pleasure to give them the kingdom.”
 Fr. Julio Meinvielle (1905-1973) quoted from his book (first published in 1970, this quote below is from the Spanish 2nd. edition of 1994, pp. 363-364) From the Kabala to Progressivism. Original title: De la Cabala al Progresismo a PDF edition in Spanish is available on line. Quote translated.
 At present some of the actions of the Holy Father may seem hard to understand or even reprehensible. Yet God is in control and all will help to achieve His purpose.
Mark 13:28-31 – “From the fig tree learn its lesson: as soon as its branch becomes tender and puts forth its leaves, you know that summer is near. So also, when you see these things taking place, you know that he is near, at the very gates. Truly I tell you, this generation will not pass away until all these things have taken place. Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away.”
Reprinted from a post in 2015