Monday, April 16, 2007

Group conscience--Tradition Two

There's something that happened yesterday that nearly caused a lot of hurt and could have added to an already sad situation.

Yesterday I received a phone call to tell me that the regular Sunday night meeting was being canceled due to inclement weather. Yes, there were tornado warnings in some areas of the state, but I also knew that there were some people who were needing that meeting. I had found out on Saturday that one in our fellowship was having a hard time because of the overdose death of a former SO during the week. When I heard that the meeting had been canceled, I felt that it wasn't a good idea.

We say at the end of our meeting that "When anyone, anywhere, reaches out for help —let the hand of Al-Anon and Alateen always be there, and —Let It Begin With Me." Those words are ones that tell me that I need to be there when someone is having difficulty. So, I called my sponsor and explained that I thought that canceling was a bad idea. He hadn't been the one to cancel the meeting and had been notified by phone just as I had. Later in the afternoon, my sponsor called to tell me that there was going to be an emergency meeting because one in our group was having a hard time dealing with the overdose death. She had requested that the meeting be held as she wanted to be with her home group. Only a few members were called to be there because everyone else had been told of the cancellation.

So I went and we read and shared our thoughts. It was very hard on the person who was grieving the loss. Lots of very raw emotions, some guilt and tons of resentment came out. There was another one in our group who showed up who hadn't been notified about the cancellation of the meeting and who was also having a very hard time over the severing of a relationship with an alcoholic.

Somehow the HP brought us together to help each other. For me, it was also a clear demonstration of Tradition Two: "For our group purpose there is but one authority—a loving God as He may express Himself in our group conscience. Our leaders are but trusted servants—they do not govern." I am glad that anger and frustration over the meeting cancellation didn't build up in me or in any one else. I'm not sure how those who weren't called to come to the "on again" meeting will feel. I think that we each learned a valuable lesson that we need to hold our meeting unless there is an act of God that forces a cancellation.


  1. Hmmm, I, personally, have never heard of canceling a meeting before due to weather. I have been at more than one NA meeting where we have had to stop and get into a safe area due to tornado sirens blaring.
    There is a big risk when someone walks up to the door and finds a scheduled meeting not there where they are supposed to be.
    I am glad you met for the sake of those who really needed you to meet.

  2. ah bless. what a cool thing you did ''for the still suffering human". does't it feel GREAT when you do stuff for other people? I LOVE it. its an addictive rush for me.
    anyway thanks for that nice story. hope the weather calms down soon. you know if all else fails you can stick a post it to the door saying the meeting has reconvened in a coffee shop down the road or in someones front room if you are unable to use that venue for any reason. when peopla are sick and can't get to meetings, we sometimes go have a meeting in their home instead. what i mean is that there is flexibilty if you really need it.
    but good going all the same. i hope your troubled al anon friend feels better soon..

  3. Syd,
    I've read your blog and it reminds me of a flower slowly opening, one petal at a time. I feel blessed that I've been able to get a small glimpse in to your world as you move through your journey of self discovery and recovery. I've watched my long time friend Christine (Enjoy Today)move through her journey since we were teenagers and it's truly awe inspiring to see the complete turn around in her soul.
    Keep up the great work!
    May peace continue to surround your gentle spirit.

  4. I am sooo glad you listened to your inner voice or Hp.. I am really glad to hear that you were willing and others were willing to brave the weather to reach out to someone who is hurting.
    Thanks for inspiring me Syd : )

  5. I think God arranged to have just the right people there for your friend. Glad you were one of them.

  6. Tornado warnings make me homesick for the Midwest.


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