First -- I apologize to SSSNW for not answering the question sooner. There are times when, I log on and see that there are new messages -- and then something happens that knocks me off line. And, when I get logged back in, the notices for the new messages are gone -- and I miss them.
In regards to your question: I don't work with an established format for having them read the stories in the back of the book. Whenever I think it's important for them to read a story in the back of the book, I only direct them to stories that were published in the First Edition of the book, and not stories that were included after the First Edition. I like sticking with the pure stuff without additives. I drank my liquor straight with no mixers and I like my recovery straight -- with no mixers.
Rain, just want more than anything else to thank you for your participation here in the forum! I appreciate you sharing your time and experience! It's helpful to me and to many others that cruise thought the forum reading and searching for answers -- and we never hear from them. That's okay. We were able to help them anyway. And, if it didn't help them -- at least it helped us to make the effort.
I had an experience that was not the same, but similar to yours. My very first sponsor was very active in AA and helped many for the 17 years he had sober before he sponsored me. He was reasonably experienced with the Big Book, was a Pioneer in H&I, and held 4th Step workshops.
However, he didn't really adhere to how they took the Steps, historically speaking. When I finally took my Steps -- I was taking them undiluted out of the Big Book, with the help of some Charlie and Joe tapes that I had been listening to. I'd have to say that my sponsor learned a few things as I used him -- so that I could do my Step work.
I still give him much of the credit for helping me stay sober long enough to find the answers in the book. After I finished Step 7, and went back to him to do Step 8, he pretty much resigned on me -- with the explanation that I needed more help than he had the experience for, when it came to making my amends. I had some pretty big stuff to deal with and it was out of his league. While I enlisted a group of men in a men's stag meeting to sponsor me through Step 9, I still called my sponsor my sponsor -- until I finally switched over to the sponsor that I currently have.
I had completely tooken -- the 12 Steps by the time I got to my current sponsor -- so we didn't spend a lot of time on "taking the Steps" -- we've spent our time on my learning and acquiring structure and discipline in practicing the principles of the 12 Steps and living the AA philosophy. He has been here to guide me in daily living and growing and understanding and improving my effectiveness in living sober. I still had much to learn -- and I'm still learning!
Thanks again -- for all that you are doing here Rain! I appreciate you!