We wish to remind the reader once more, because the point is easily forgotten, that the Church does not attempt to transplant technical solutions from one period to another, but to defend principles which are timeless. Thus, the popes return again and again to the institution of the guild because of its exceptional value as an illustration. As Leo XIII implored so long ago in Humanum Genus:
“[T]here is a matter wisely instituted by our forefathers, but in course of time laid aside, which may now be used as a pattern and form of something similar. We mean the associations of guilds of workmen, for the protection, under the guidance of religion, both of their temporal interests and of their morality. If our ancestors, by long use and experience, felt the benefit of these guilds, our age perhaps will feel it the more by reason of the opportunity which they will give of crushing the power of the sects. Those who support themselves by the labour of their hands, besides being, by their very condition, most worthy above all others of charity and consolation, are also especially exposed to the allurements of men whose ways lie in fraud and deceit. Therefore, they ought to be helped with the greatest possible kindness, and to be invited to join associations that are good, lest they be drawn away to others that are evil. For this reason, We greatly wish, for the salvation of the people, that, under the auspices and patronage of the bishops, and at convenient times, these guilds may be generally restored. To Our great delight, sodalities of this kind and also associations of masters have in many places already been established, having, each class of them, for their object to help the honest workman, to protect and guard his children and family, and to promote in them piety, Christian knowledge, and a moral life.”
The observant reader will have noticed that, by entering a discussion of the guild and its organizational structure, which is largely extra-economic, we have moved beyond the realm of economic activity and into the political. At this point, then, we can take up that sphere more explicitly.
 HG, 35.