DebbieV wrote:... and has worked their steps
For me... that's the qualifier
that makes the difference.
The purpose of the AA Recover Plan: is to produce a personality change sufficient to recover from alcoholism.
The 12 Steps is the formula to produce the results of the AA plan.
The person that Chairs, Leads, or is Secretary of an AA meeting "IS" the example and representative of the AA Recovery Plan -- for those who are visiting the AA meetings or checking out AA to discover whether or not AA offers the hope that will help them (especially on their first encounter with AA).
If the person sitting in the Chair, or in some way being the "Representative" and "Example" for AA -- is a poor example -- why would a newcomer want what AA has to offer?
There is a person in my local area -- that says he has eight years sobriety -- and sometimes, he will forcefully take over and Chair meetings in a Club house. I've watched as many people over the years, have walked out of the meeting exclaiming "If AA has to offer me what that guy has -- I'd rather find something that will work" -- Or, "Gees. I was hoping to get rid of what that guy has -- and, he hasn't gotten rid of it in all that time in AA? I'm in the wrong place!" And, they leave and never come back.
That to me, is very sad and unfortunate.
I can't stay sober as a result of attending meetings. I can't stay sober just because I have a sponsor. I can't stay sober -- regardless of how active I am in AA activities.
If I have not experienced the personality transformation that is produced as a result of the 12 Steps, and continue to "practice those Steps (principles) in all my affairs -- every day -- I'm convinced that I'm an alcoholic of the type that it would be hopeless to recover or stay sober.
I realize that my ideas go against the grain of many in AA. That's okay with me. I'd rather be sober, sane, happy, joyous and free... trying to help another alcoholic ... more than I would want to be AA popularity-correct.
Can you imagine wanting to buy a car... and you go to the car dealer... you walk into the showroom... and the dealer has his biggest lemon junker rusting, sputtering, falling apart, paint peeling, upholstery all torn up... it smells like some family has been living in the car for 20 years... and there is spoiled shrimp and fish bait under the seats?
No. The car dealer would put his finest example of all his cars in the showroom.
When a person chairs an AA meeting, speaks at an AA meeting, or is Secretary of an AA meeting -- it is a tremendous responsibility to have.
"If" it's a program of attraction (as we often hear)... why wouldn't we want to look -- and act -- and be -- attractive? "I have a responsibility to be a good example of the fact that AA does work... if I'm serving in an activity that represents AA."
"If" I haven't experienced the personality transformation and I'm able to be a good example of AA -- to the newcomers and visitors -- I can be serving in positions of: cookie lady, set-up person, literature person, floor sweeper, coffee maker, and picking up butts and trash after the meeting. (Those positions are important. And, they are the jobs that I can ALWAYS be doing).
Those are my thoughts on it.
PS: Nice to hear from you Debbie! Remember when it was suggested for you to dress up -- when chairing or speaking?
What can I say? Wasn't it true... that many of those newcomers wanted what you had?
I'm sure that you're still looking good -- as you carry the AA message in Silverton!