Why Is It So Hard to Have a Personal Relationship with the Holy Spirit?


If God is three persons, as we believe, then shouldn’t we have a personal relationship with each one? It certainly seems so. However, when it comes to the third person of the Trinity, the Holy Spirit, it seems that we run into difficulties. I think the issue is obvious. Christ assumed a fully human nature …

Source: Why Is It So Hard to Have a Personal Relationship with the Holy Spirit?

Where Cultural and Moral Relativism Intersect


What is the relationship between cultural relativism and moral relativism? In trying to answer this question, we find some remarkable issues converging. If we ignore these convergences, we will miss opportunities to improve upon the moral tenor of our personal lives and the moral character of our society at the same time. Allan Bloom opens …

Source: Where Cultural and Moral Relativism Intersect – Crisis Magazine

Vatican Presents Instrumentum Laboris of Special Assembly of the Synod of Bishops for Pan-Amazon Region


Meeting With Amazonian Indians In Peru © Vatican Media

‘Amazonia, new paths for the Church and for an integral ecology’ – October 6-27, 2019 June 17, 2019 ZENIT StaffSynod of bishops

The Vatican on June 17, 2019, presented the Instrumentum laboris of the Special Assembly of the Synod of Bishops for the Pan-Amazon Region, to be held from October 6-27, 2019 and entitled Amazonia, new paths for the Church and for an integral ecology.

Cardinal Lorenzo Baldisseri, general secretary of the Synod of Bishops, H.E. Msgr. Fabio Fabene, under-secretary of the same Synod, and the Rev. Fr. Humberto Miguel Yáñez, S.J., titular professor of moral theology at the Pontifical Gregorian University of Rome presented the document a press conference held in the Holy See Press Office.

The cardinal explained the preparatory phase of the Assembly, which began in January last year with the meeting of the REPAM (Pan-Amazon Ecclesial Network) with the general secretary of the Synod of Bishops, followed by the constitution of the pre-Synodal Council of the Secretariat.

“With the publication of the preparatory Document”, he observed, “there began the broad consultation with the people of God in the Amazon on the theme of the Synod. The questionnaire attached to the Document offered the opportunity for a rich debate within the seven Episcopal Conferences involved in the Amazon region, which sent their answers to the General Secretariat. … The material resulting from this extensive consultation was the object of careful study and classification by the General Secretariat of the Synod of Bishops which, with the help of qualified experts, proceeded to draw up a draft working Document”.

He went on to explain the key features of the text of the Instrumentum Laboris, which is divided into three sections, following the following three general themes:

The voice of Amazonia, intended as listening to the territory to achieve pastoral conversion following Evangelii Gaudium. This part treats themes of great importance in understanding the reality of the Pan-Amazon region.

“The first theme is that of life, given that the Amazon is a source of life, of life in abundance, which is expressed in the desire of the Amazonian peoples to ‘live well’, even though that life is often threatened and it is necessary to defend it against exploitation in its various forms. The second theme refers to the territory, source of life and of God’s revelation, where everything is connected, in which there co-exist situations of extraordinary beauty with many forces that threaten to destroy the territory, though there is no lack of an encouraging openness to hope. The third theme is time, understood as kairos, time of grace, of inculturation and interculturality, time of challenges and urgency, but also a time of hope. The fourth theme is that of dialogue with the Amazonian peoples, conceived in a missionary sense”.

Integral ecology, the theme of the second Part, underlines the reality of the Amazon territory for an ecological conversion in accordance with the encyclical Laudato si’.

“In this sense”, the cardinal noted, “highly significant issues of the Pan-Amazon reality are taken into consideration, such as, for example: extractive destruction; threats to and protection of indigenous peoples in voluntary isolation; the complex problem of migration, with its causes and consequences; the ever-present and growing phenomenon of urbanization; the social changes that affect the family and make it vulnerable; the devastating problem of corruption, a true structural moral scourge; and the question of integral health and integral education, conceived as encounter and conversion towards an integral ecology”.

The third theme is “The challenges and hopes of the prophetic Church in Amazonia, with an Amazonian and missionary face”.

The Church is thus “involved in processes of inculturation and interculturality, a church that lives its faith through an inculturated liturgy, a church that carries out its life in the indigenous worldview, whether within local communities or in openness to urban evangelization, a church open to interreligious dialogue, a church that intends to use the media at the service of integral human promotion and wants to assume more and more a prophetic role in society “.

“Therefore”, concluded the cardinal, “the Special Assembly for the Pan-Amazonian Region promises to be a pastoral reflection open to the recognition of diversity, listening to the Amazonian reality with all its cultural and ecclesial aspects. The image of a Church with an Amazonian face, courageous in its prophetic proclamation of the Gospel in defense of Creation and of indigenous peoples, is the horizon towards which we walk under Pope Francis’ guidance, to share an experience of fraternal communion, collegiality, and synodality”.

Fr. Humberto Miguel Yáñez S.J. focused on the topic of integral ecology and ecological conversion, which requires “an integral conversion of the whole human being in his or her networks of interpersonal relationships and with creation; a pastoral conversion of the Church, called to take care of the common home as part of its evangelizing mission, to teach its faithful after learning from the native peoples. In this way, he will be able to fulfill his prophetic mission even with regard to the powerful of this world, many of whom are not interested in respecting nature and the peoples that inhabit it, especially the poor, but only in extracting as much wealth as possible, which usually ends up in the hands of a few”.

Bishop Fabio Febene dedicated his intervention to the new ecclesial paths referred to in the third part of the Instrumentum Laboris. “Paths that, without forgetting the great work of the first evangelization and the pastoral work carried out so far”, he said, “must be traveled in order to build a Church with an Amazonian and missionary countenance. A Church that is an expression of the plurality of peoples, cultures, and ecosystems that meet in this territory. It is precisely the human and environmental of the Amazon, where there live indigenous peoples, ribeirinhos, Afrodescendents, and migrants who ask for the uniqueness of the region to be highlighted in the unity of the Church.

“The new pathways are implemented through a process of inculturation, that is, the incarnation of the Gospel in the plurality of human cultures, promoting dialogue among them with a view to mutual enrichment. In this way, inculturation opens the way to interculturality”.

Konduga attacks: Amnesty International says FG must do more to protect civilians


iNewsiReports By YEKEEN Akinwale On Jun 17, 2019

A file picture of Nigerian soldiers on patrol

FOLLOWING insurgents’ attacks in Konduga, Borno State on Sunday evening by suspected members of Boko Haram, the Amnesty International says Nigerian government must do more to protect civilians.

In its reaction to the three bomb attacks that left 30 people dead and more than 40 injured, the organisation said government must find ways to protect civilians, especially in areas such as Konduga that have frequently been targeted by Boko Haram.

All those responsible, it added, “must face justice for all the atrocities it has committed, including the use of children for suicide missions.”

In a Twitter message on Monday, Amnesty International said the attacks were typical of Boko Haram’s despicable disdain for the sanctity of human life.

It said the suicide bomb attacks killing at least 30 football fans bore hallmarks of Boko Haram.

“ These horrific suicide bomb attacks that killed at least 30 people  and injured over 40 more bear all the hallmarks of #BokoHaram and its vicious, unrelenting campaign targeting civilians,” Amnesty International tweeted.

FBI Never Saw CrowdStrike Unredacted or Final Report on Alleged Russian Hacking Because None was Produced


The FBI relied on CrowdStrike’s “conclusion” to blame Russia for hacking DNC servers, though the private firm never produced a final report and the FBI never asked them to, as Ray McGovern explains.

By Ray McGovern, June 17, 2019
Special to Consortium News

CrowdStrike, the controversial cybersecurity firm that the Democratic National Committee chose over the FBI in 2016 to examine its compromised computer servers, never produced an un-redacted or final forensic report for the government because the FBI never required it to, the Justice Department has admitted.

The revelation came in a court filing by the government in the pre-trial phase of Roger Stone, a long-time Republican operative who had an unofficial role in the campaign of candidate Donald Trump. Stone has been charged with misleading Congress, obstructing justice and intimidating a witness.

The filing was in response to a motion by Stone’s lawyers asking for “unredacted reports” from CrowdStrike in an effort to get the government to prove that Russia hacked the DNC server. “The government … does not possess the information the defandant seeks,” the filing says.

In his motion, Stone’s lawyers said he had only been given three redacted drafts. In a startling footnote in the government’s response, the DOJ admits the drafts are all that exist. “Although the reports produced to the defendant are marked ‘draft,’ counsel for the DNC and DCCC informed the government that they are the last version of the report produced,” the footnote says.

In other words CrowdStrike, upon which the FBI relied to conclude that Russia hacked the DNC, never completed a final report and only turned over three redacted drafts to the government.

Stone on his way to court in February. (Victoria Pickering/Flickr)

These drafts were “voluntarily” given to the FBI by DNC lawyers, the filing says. “No redacted information concerned the attribution of the attack to Russian actors,” the filing quotes DNC lawyers as saying.

In Stone’s motion his lawyers argued: “If the Russian state did not hack the DNC, DCCC, or [Clinton campaign chairman John] Podesta’s servers, then Roger Stone was prosecuted for obstructing a congressional investigation into an unproven Russian state hacking conspiracy … The issue of whether or not the DNC was hacked is central to the Defendant’s defense.”

The DOJ responded: “The government does not need to prove at the defendant’s trial that the Russians hacked the DNC in order to prove the defendant made false statements, tampered with a witness, and obstructed justice into a congressional investigation regarding election interference.”

Thousands of emails from the DNC server were published by WikiLeaks in July 2016 revealing that the DNC interfered in the Democratic primary process to favor former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton over Senator Bernie Sanders for the party’s presidential nomination. The U.S. indicted 12 Russian military intelligence agents in 2018 for allegedly hacking the DNC server and giving the emails to WikiLeaks.

Comey Can’t Say Why

At a time of high tension in the 2016 presidential campaign, when the late Sen. John McCain and others were calling Russian “hacking” an “act of war,” the FBI settled for three redacted “draft reports” from CrowdStrike rather than investigate the alleged hacking itself, the court document shows.

Then FBI Director James Comey admitted in congressional testimony that he chose not to take control of the DNC’s “hacked” computers, and did not dispatch FBI computer experts to inspect them, but has had trouble explaining why.

In his testimony, he conceded that “best practices” would have dictated that forensic experts gain physical access to the computers. Nevertheless, the FBI decided to rely on forensics performed by a firm being paid for by the DNC.

Suspicions grew as Comey started referring to CrowdStrike as the “pros that they hired.” Doubts became more intense when he referred to CrowdStrike as “a high-class entity.” In fact the company had a tarnished reputation for reliability and objectivity well before it was hired by the DNC.

Dimitri Alperovitch, a CrowdStrike co-founder, is an opponent of Russian President Vladimir Putin and a senior fellow at the anti-Russian Atlantic Council think tank in Washington. CrowdStrike said it determined that Russia had hacked the DNC server because it found Cyrillic letters in the metadata, as well as the name of the first Soviet intelligence chief—clues an amateur might leave.

CrowdStrike was forced to “revise(d) and retract(ed) statements it used to buttress claims of Russian hacking during last year’s American presidential election campaign,” Voice of America reported in March 2017. 

CrowdStrike’s Early Role

In a Memorandum for the President on July 24, 2017, Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity referred prominently to this instructive time sequence:

June 12, 2016: Julian Assange announces WikiLeaks is about to publish ‘emails related to Hillary Clinton.’

June 14, 2016: DNC contractor CrowdStrike, (with a dubious professional record and multiple conflicts of interest) announces that malware has been found on the DNC server and claims there is evidence it was injected by Russians.

June 15, 2016: ‘Guccifer 2.0’ affirms the DNC statement; claims responsibility for the ‘hack;’ claims to be a WikiLeaks source; and posts a document that the forensics show was synthetically tainted with ‘Russian fingerprints.’

VIPS does not believe the June 12, 14, & 15 timing was pure coincidence. Rather, it suggests the start of a pre-emptive move to associate Russia with anything WikiLeaks might have been about to publish and to “show” that it came from a Russian hack.  

Bill Binney, a former NSA technical director and a VIPS member, filed an affidavit in Stone’s case. Binney said: “WikiLeaks did not receive stolen data from the Russian government. Intrinsic metadata in the publicly available files on WikiLeaks demonstrates that the files acquired by WikiLeaks were delivered in a medium such as a thumb drive.”

Preferring CrowdStrike; Splaining to Congress

Why did FBI Director James Comey not simply insist on access to the DNC computers? Surely he could have gotten the appropriate authorization. In early January 2017, reacting to media reports that the FBI never asked for access, Comey told the Senate Intelligence Committee there were “multiple requests at different levels” for access to the DNC servers.“Ultimately what was agreed to is the private company would share with us what they saw,” he said. Comey described CrowdStrike as a “highly respected” cybersecurity company.

Asked by committee Chairman Richard Burr (R-NC) whether direct access to the servers and devices would have helped the FBI in their investigation, Comey said it would have. “Our forensics folks would always prefer to get access to the original device or server that’s involved, so it’s the best evidence,” he said.

Five months later, after Comey had been fired, Burr gave him a Mulligan in the form of a few kid-gloves, clearly well-rehearsed, questions:

BURR:And the FBI, in this case, unlike other cases that you might investigate — did you ever have access to the actual hardware that was hacked? Or did you have to rely on a third party to provide you the data that they had collected?

COMEY:In the case of the DNC, … we did not have access to the devices themselves. We got relevant forensic information from a private party, a high-class entity, that had done the work. But we didn’t get direct access.

BURR:But no content?

COMEY:Correct.

BURR:Isn’t content an important part of the forensics from a counterintelligence standpoint?

COMEY:It is, although what was briefed to me by my folks — the people who were my folks at the time is that they had gotten the information from the private party that they needed to understand the intrusion by the spring of 2016.

More telling was earlier questioning by House Intelligence Committee member, Rep. Will Hurd (R-TX), who had been a CIA officer for a decade.On March 20, 2017 while he was still FBI director, Comey evidenced some considerable discomfort as he tried to explain to the committee why the FBI did not insist on getting physical access to the DNC computers and do its own forensics:

HURD:So there was about a year between the FBI’s first notification of some potential problems with the DNC network and then that information getting on — getting on Wikileaks.

COMEY:Yes, sir.

HURD:… when did the DNC provide access for — to the FBI for your technical folks to review what happened?

COMEY:Well we never got direct access to the machines themselves. The DNC in the spring of 2016 hired a firm that ultimately shared with us their forensics from their review of the system. …

HURD:… So, Director FBI notified the DNC early, before any information was put on Wikileaksand when — youhave still been — never been given access to any of the technical or the physical machines that were — that were hacked by the Russians.

COMEY: That’s correct although we got the forensics from the pros that they hired which — again, best practice is always to get access to the machines themselves, but this — my folks tell me was an appropriate substitute.

Comey Spikes Deal With Assange

Assange: Comey killed deal. (YouTube)

Director Comey’s March 20, 2017 testimony to the House Intelligence Committee came at the same time he was scuttling months-long negotiations between Assange and lawyers representing the DOJ and CIA to grant some limited immunity for the WikiLeaks founder. In return, Assange offered to: (1) redact “some classified CIA information he might release in the future,” and (2) “provide technical evidence and discussion regarding who did not engage in the DNC releases.”

Investigative journalist John Solomon, quoting WikiLeaks’ intermediary with the government, broke this story, based on “interviews and a trove of internal DOJ documents turned over to Senate investigators.” It would be a safe assumption that Assange was offering to prove that Russia was not WikiLeaks’ source of the DNC emails, something Assange has repeatedly said.

That, of course, would have been the last thing Comey would have wanted.

On March 31, 2017 WikiLeaks released the most damaging disclosure up to that point from what it called “Vault 7” — a treasure trove of CIA cybertools leaked from CIA files. This disclosure featured the tool “Marble Framework,” which enabled the CIA to hack into computers, disguise who hacked in, and falsely attribute the hack to someone else by leaving so-called tell-tale signs — like Cyrillic, for example.

The CIA documents also showed that the “Marble” tool had been employed in 2016.

Two weeks later, then CIA Director Mike Pompeo branded WikiLeaks a “non-state hostile intelligence service,” and the U.S. put pressure on Ecuador, which had given Assange asylum, to expel him from its London embassy. He was on April 11 when British police arrested him. On the same day he was convicted of skipping bail on a Swedish investigation that had since been dropped. Assange was sentenced to 50 weeks in London’s max-security Belmarsh prison.

Comey, it seems a safe bet, still worries that Assange or one of his associates, will provide “technical evidence” enough to prove “who did not engage in the DNC releases.”

What Were They Thinking?

At the March 20, 2017 House Intelligence Committee hearing, Congressman Trey Gowdy heaped effusive praise on then-FBI Director Comey, calling him “incredibly respected.” At that early stage, no doubt Gowdy meant no double entendre. He might now.

As Russia-gate transmogrifies into Deep State-gate, the DOJ is launching a probe into the origins of Russia-gate and the intelligence agencies alleged role in it. It remains to be seen whether U.S. Attorney for the District of Connecticut John Durham, who is leading the probe, will interview Assange, unlike Special Counsel Robert Mueller, who did not. 

It is proving very difficult for some of my old FBI friends and others to believe that Comey and other justice, intelligence, and security officials at the very top could have played fast and loose with the Constitution and the law and lived a lie over the past few years.

“How did they ever think they could get away with it?” they ask. The answer is deceivingly simple. Comey himself has explained it in a moment of seemingly unintentional candor in his pretentious book, “A Higher Loyalty.” He wrote, “I was making decisions in an environment where Hillary Clinton was sure to be the next president.”

There would be no problem, of course, if Mrs. Clinton had won the election. That’s what they all thought; and that probably explains their lack of care in keeping their activities off the written record and out of computers. Elementary tradecraft goes out the window with these upper-echelon, “high-class-entity” officials, when they are sure that she, and they, are going to be the inevitable winners — with promotions, not indictments in store for them.

Vatican to consider married priests for areas of Amazon region?


by Christopher Lamb


‘Instead of leaving communities without the Eucharist the criteria of selection.. of the ministers authorized to celebrate it should be changed’

Vatican to consider married priests for areas of Amazon region

A man attends Pope Francis’ meeting with people of the Amazon in Puerto Maldonado, Peru, Jan. 19, 2018
Photo: CNS photo/Paul Haring

The Catholic Church has thrown open the debate over married priests with a preparatory document for the Amazon synod suggesting bishops consider ordaining “elders,” who have an “established and stable family,” and are respected by their local community. 

The proposals, contained in a working document for the Synod on the Pan-Amazon Region which will take place in Rome from 6-27 October, link the question of ordaining married men to the pastoral needs of communities in the region.

“Communities have difficulty in celebrating the Eucharist frequently due to the lack of priests,” the document, released by the Synod of Bishops on Monday 17 June, explained. “For this reason, instead of leaving the communities without the Eucharist, the criteria of selection and preparation of the ministers authorised to celebrate it should be changed.”

Running through the document, which will form the basis of the bishops’ discussions, is a call for the Church to stand in solidarity with indigenous communities in the Amazon region, which the synod defines as all or part of Brazil, Colombia, Bolivia Ecuador, French Guiana, Guyana, Peru, Venezuela, and Surinam. 

The bishops attending the synod are being asked to look at how to “promote indigenous vocations of men and women in response to” the sacramental and pastoral needs of the people and to move from a “Church which visits” to a “Church which remains [present]” in the region. Many of the Catholic communities have to wait many months, sometimes longer, to receive the sacraments from visiting clerics.

But in trying to formulate a new pastoral vision for the Church in the Amazon the document urges a “return to the early Church” in creating appropriate ministries. 

While stressing that “celibacy is a gift for the Church,” it asks that “for the more remote areas of the region, the possibility of priestly ordination of elders, preferably indigenous, respected and accepted by their community, should be studied.”

Crucially, the synod will look at whether the priesthood must always be linked to the exercise of power jurisdiction in the Church, raising the question as to whether priests can be ordained to administer the sacraments, rather than govern. 

“Indigenous peoples possess a rich tradition of social organisation where authority is in rotation and with a profound sense of service,” the workmen document says. “Starting from this experience of organisation it would be appropriate to reconsider the idea that the exercise of jurisdiction (power of government) must be linked in all areas (sacramental, judicial, administrative) and permanently to the Sacrament of Orders.”

This idea is rooted in the thinking of a retired South African Bishop, Fritz Lobinger, who argued how a priest would be ordained solely for the “sanctifying role” of the priesthood, and his writings have been cited by Pope Francis

The Pope has said that he is not going to change the general the rule that Latin-rite priests must be celibate, but the Amazon discussions open the door to consider the question of whether the ordination of married men can occur in places deprived of the sacraments. 

Brazilian Cardinal Claudio Hummes, who is the relator general of the synod, said recently:  “So often we worry about managing to transplant the European models of priesthood onto the indigenous priests. But someone rightly has noted that too much concern is given to the profile of the ordained ministry putting it before the community that receives it.”

He added: “It should be the other way around: the community is not there for its minister, but the minister is there for the community.”

The working document stresses that the “the sacraments must be a source of life and a remedy accessible to all especially to the poor” and therefore  “it is necessary to overcome the rigidity of a discipline that excludes and alienates” and find a “pastoral sensitivity that accompanies and integrates.”

It suggests celebrations of that respond to the local culture and become the “source and summit of their Christian life,” and this includes indigenous “music and dance, in native languages and clothes, in communion with nature and with the community.”

The synod, titled “Amazonia: New paths for the church and for an integral ecology,” also calls for women to be given an “official” role in the Church, including in leadership roles, as well as in the field of education: theology, catechesis, liturgy and schools of faith and politics.

“It also asks that the voice of women be heard, that they be consulted and participate in decision-making processes, and that they can thus contribute with their sensitivity to ecclesial synodality.” Speaking at a press conference to launch the working document, Cardinal Lorenzo Baldisseri, the Secretary-General of the Synod of Bishops, pointed out that clerical celibacy was a discipline, rather than a doctrine. He cited Benedict XVI’s document, Anglicanorum Coetibus, which allowed many married Anglican clergy to be ordained Catholic priest through the structure of “personal ordinariates.” Several eastern-rite churches in communion with Rome also ordain married men as priests, although they cannot become bishops. 
  The synod organisers were keen to stress that the discussions in October are on the Amazon, rather than the Church universal, but the Pope has raised the possibility of married priests in the “Pacific Islands.”   Away from the questions of ordained ministry, the synod document calls for a “prophetic and Samaritan Church” that listens to the “voice of the Amazon” and to denounce the “structures of sin” in the territory.    The Church, it says, must stand with the indigenous people of the region and against, on the one hand,  “economic interests, greedy for oil, gas” and on the other an “ecological conservatism that cares about the biome [flora and fauna] but ignores the Amazon peoples.”   Cardinal Baldisseri added that the synod would be attended by bishops from the pan-Amazon region including the presidents of the seven bishops’ conferences of the area, the leaders of Roman Curia departments, members of the pre-synod preparatory council and 15 religious working in the region. The Pope will also choose participants, which can be up to 15 per cent of the synod fathers taking part. 

Learn to Master the Skills You Need to Lead


Lolly Daskal

As a leadership coach, I have found that leaders are usually measured more by who they are than what they do. Skills and reputation is incredibly important in leadership. And, as Warren Buffet once said, it takes 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to ruin it.

No matter what great things you do, your leadership will be impaired if you’re not the person you should be and you are not doing what you should be doing. So what skills and attributes should a leader cultivate to build and to master their leadership? Here are the 10 that matter most.

Self-awareness. The most respected leaders know who they are and what they are capable of achieving. Self-awareness allows you to see your own patterns and consider whether they’re serving you well. It helps keep you honest with yourself so you can lead from within.

Integrity. Admired leaders don’t only talk about doing the right thing. Their actions match their words, and they do what is right, not what is easy. When they make a statement or decision, everyone believes that they will follow through. Integrity is the foundation of great leadership.

Emotional intelligence. Intelligence and technical skills can take you so far, but it’s emotional intelligence that allows you to reach the top. Emotionally fit leaders are able to manage their stress levels without taking their emotions out on their team. They’re also more empathetic and understand what makes other people tick, which in turn makes them better able to motivate and inspire them.

Communication. A respected leader is one who communicates well by email, on the phone, and face-to-face. People need to be able to grasp the purpose, the directions, and the end goal of any project in order for it to be completed successfully. Excellent communication skills are essential in establishing and maintaining a productive work environment.

Decisiveness. A big part of being a leader is decisiveness. That means the ability to apply your knowledge and instincts to make sound decisions on the fly. It also means that once you’ve made up their mind, you don’t hesitate to commit. Leaders who are consistent in their decisions, who rarely second-guess or change their minds, generate trust—not only from their team but from everyone around them.

Optimism. At the core of great leadership, leaders need to be champions for their organization and its mission, staying positive even in the face of setbacks. Leaders are most effective when they can stay motivated in tough times and remain positive when things go wrong, keeping their team’s spirits up and motivating them to keep achieving their best in any climate.

Humility. There is no more powerful leader than one who shows humility in their character. Great leaders admit when they are wrong and take criticism as an opportunity for growth. They are able to show how grateful they are to be where they are, and they treat leadership as an opportunity for service, not an excuse for privilege.

Delegation. Many leaders are perfectionists and have a hard time delegating, especially when they have a particular vision and are passionate about its execution. But the most effective leaders—those who truly understand what leadership is about—recognize that by delegating tasks to others, the workload is shared and team spirit thrives. They take care to assign the right task to the right person so that it can be completed correctly, effectively, and on schedule.

Flexibility. When a leader understands that everyone is different, they can be agile and adaptable when needed. An essential skill for great leaders is having the ability to adapt their leadership style to diverse situations and needs, maintaining a focus on their team as well as the bottom line. Staying at the cutting edge of any industry requires flexibility and the ability to adapt quickly to all kinds of changes, within and outside the organization.

Willingness to grow. I cannot stress this skill enough. Far too many leaders think the skills that got them there are the ones that are going to keep them there. But that is never the case. The best leaders are always coachable and teachable. They know they need support to stay on top and they need to grow to stay relevant as the world around them changes. Businesses want leaders with diversity and agility.