In the early days many thousands of members benefited from The A.A. Tools of Recovery. The fellowship has moved on since then and a lot of this guide is now embeded in the customs of A.A. While in this form they have stood the test of time and bought many members to a full recovery.

Abstinance

We commit ourselves to stay away from the first drink, one day at a time.

Meetings

We attend A.A. meetings to learn how the program works, to share our experience, strength and hope with each other, and because through the support of the fellowship, we can do what we could never do alone.

Sponsor

A sponsor is a person in the A.A. program who has what we want and is continually sober. A sponsor is someone you can relate to, have access to and can confide in.

Telephone

The telephone is our lifeline — our meetings between meetings. Call before you take the first drink. The more numbers you have, the more insurance you have.

Literature

The Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous is our basic tool and text. The Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions and A.A. pamphlets are recommended reading, and are available at this meeting.

Service

Service helps our personal program grow. Service is giving in A.A. Service is leading a meeting, making coffee, moving chairs, being a sponsor, or emptying ashtrays. Service is action, and action is the magic word in this program.

Anonymity

Whom you see here, what you hear here, when you leave here, let it stay here. Anonymity is the spiritual foundation of our program.

History

In the late 1970’s and early 1980’s, A.A. the St. Joseph river valley experienced a period of rapid growth, producing a huge influx of raw beginners, along with the creation of many additional meetings. Three of the old-timers got together — Bill Peters, Don Helvey, and Marcel “Ben” Benson — along with two other men who were relatively new to the program — Chainsaw Clint Becker and Jan N. — and put together a short piece called the A.A. Tools of Recovery, summarizing the seven most important things which they felt that these newcomers to the program needed to know. Benson was a Frenchman and Clint got his nickname from an incident that happened back when he was still drinking. He was working as a tree trimmer at that time, his wife got mad at him and locked him out of the house, and he cut the door out with a chainsaw.

The A.A. Tools of Recovery