Message From the Board…1/2020
Well, last year whipped by! As we get ready to start a new year, we look back at 2019 and are thankful for another successful year at the Camel 24 Fellowship. The club again hosted the Christmas Alcathon, sponsored by District 31 and facilitated by Wanda C. Thank you Wanda for another successful Alcathon. On New Year’s Eve, we rang in the new year together in fellowship as we watched the ball drop in Times Square for the start of a new decade! Good time had by all.
While 2019 flew by it was an eventful and productive year. The Membership Drives held each month have helped to increase our rolls with well over a hundred members. If you’d like to be a member of the Camel 24 Fellowship, membership brochures are located in the pamphlet display by the chair platform. For $15.00 a month (about 50 cents a day) you’ll be helping to support the club to keep the coffee hot and the lights on!!!!!!!
The updated website at www.camelclubraleigh.org continues to provide information on recovery, listing events at the club as well as links to other recovery websites. Keep up to date on what’s new to the recovery community.
We’ve added several new meetings to our weekly schedule. On Tuesday’s at 5:30 pm, a beginners meeting, A Bridge to Life, is serving those with less than a year of sobriety. The format is different from regular open meetings allowing the newcomer to share or ask questions in an informal setting. On Sunday at 2:00 pm the New Age Recovery Group has launched, a literature study each week, with a pot luck lunch and speaker on the fourth Sunday. The meeting has gotten off to a great start. Hope you’ll come check it out. Also, we have two new Narcotics Anonymous meetings. Wednesday at 7:00 pm and Saturday at 8:00 pm. Both are literature studies with the Saturday meeting focusing on the Gray Book.
Keep in mind that election of the Board of Directors will be held early in 2020. Consider running for a position on the board. Lots of new plans are in the works for the coming year. In January, 2020, each member of the Fellowship will receive a packet of materials with information regarding the Annual Meeting, the Member Appreciation Dinner, and the Annual Election of the Board of Directors, which are all held at the end of February. If you would like to serve on the board or know someone who would like to serve on the board please contact one of the present board members. Nominations are being considered at the next Board of Directors meeting on January 19th.
The Camel 24 Fellowship continues to provide and preserve a safe environment to advance the Spiritual, Mental and Physical welfare of the recovering community. All members are welcome to attend board meetings. The Board will be meeting at 3:15 pm every third Sunday of the month. The next scheduled meeting is at 3:15 pm on Sunday, January19, 2020 . Hope you’ll join us and see what the board is planning and how you can become involved.
Did you know…
The Prefaces of the Big Book and a Little History
On a borrowed $4,000 the book Alcoholics Anonymous was produced, by Works Publishing in 1939. This little company, formed by Bill and Dr. Bob and their non-alcoholic friends along with other founding members was taken over by the Alcoholic Foundation in 1940 when the shareholders and Charles B. Towns were paid off in full by the Foundation for their ‘investments’ in the project. Thus, our basic text has been held in trust by first, the Foundation, and now A. A.. World Services, Inc., for the Society of Alcoholics Anonymous for all time.
First Edition Forward
In the Foreword to the First Edition. we find the premise, the simple statement of purpose which remains the hub of unity for the Fellowship, “We of Alcoholics Anonymous are more than 100 men and women who have recovered from a seemingly hopeless state of mind and body. To show other alcoholics precisely how we have recovered is the main purpose of this book. ” (Page iii, Foreword to the First Edition of Big Book, Alcoholics Anonymous).
In a speech that Bill gave in Fort Worth about the writing of the book, he says, “I suppose the book yarn really started in the living room of Doc and Annie Smith. As you know, I landed there in the summer of ’35, a little group caught hold. I helped Smithy briefly with it and he went on to found the first A. A.. group in the world. And, as with all new groups, it was nearly all failure, but now and then, somebody saw the light and there was progress. Pampered, I got back to New York a little more experienced; a group started there, and by the time we got around to 1937, this thinking had leaped a little over into Cleveland, and began to move south into New York. But, it was still, we thought in those years, flying blind, a flickering candle indeed, that might at any moment be snuffed out. So, on this late fall afternoon in 1937, Smithy and I were talking together in his living room, Anne sitting there, when we began to count noses. How many people had stayed dry; in Akron, in New York, maybe a few in Cleveland? How many had stayed dry and for how long? And when we added up the total, it sure was a handful of, I don’t know, 35, 40 maybe. But enough time had elapsed on enough really fatal cases of alcoholism, so that we grasped the importance of these small statistics. Bob and I saw for the first time that this thing was going to succeed. That God in his providence and mercy had thrown a new light into the dark coves where we and our kind had been and were still by the millions dwelling. I never can forget the elation and ecstasy that seized us both. And then we sat happily talking and reflecting. We reflected that well, a couple of score of drunks were sober but this had taken three long years. There had been an immense amount of failure and a long time had been taken just to sober up the handful. How could we transmit our message to them, and by what means … how could this light be a reflection and transmitted without being distorted and garbled?
And we touched on the book. The group conscience consisted of 18 men good and true … and the good and true men, you could see right away, were damned skeptical about it all. Almost with one voice, they chorused, ‘let’s keep it simple – This is going to bring money into this thing, this is going to create a professional class. We’ll all be ruined.’ Well, I countered, “That’s a very good argument. Lots to what you say… but even within gunshot of this very house, alcoholics are dying like flies. And if this thing doesn’t move any faster than it has in the last 3 years, it may be another 10 before it gets to the outskirts of Akron. How in God’s name are we going to carry this message to others? We’ve got to take some kind of chance. We can’t keep it so simple that it becomes anarchy and gets complicated. We can’t keep it so simple that it won’t propagate itself. And we’ve got to have a lot of money to do these things.”
The history of the book project is well-documented in Bill’s writings. It is a wonderful story which bears repeating again and again because of its significance to the fellowship.
The principles which were employed by the early-timers and their friends will keep us in good stead as we travel the road to the Fourth Edition of the Big Book.
PREFACE (Fourth Edition)
“THIS IS the fourth edition of the book “Alcoholics Anonymous.” The first edition appeared in April 1939, and in the following sixteen years, more than 300,000 copies went into circulation. The second edition, published in 1955, reached a total of more than 1,150,500 copies. The third edition, which came off press in 1976, achieved a circulation of approximately 19,550,000 in all formats.
Because this book has become the basic text for our Society and has helped such large numbers of alcoholic men and women to recovery, there exists strong sentiment against any radical changes being made in it. Therefore, the first portion of this volume, describing the A.A. recovery program, has been left largely untouched in the course of revisions made for the second, third, and fourth editions. The section called “The Doctor’s Opinion” has been kept intact, just as it was originally written in 1939 by the late Dr. William D. Silkworth, our Society’s great medical benefactor.
The second edition added the appendices, the Twelve Traditions, and the directions for getting in “touch with A.A. But the chief change was in the section of personal stories, which was expanded to reflect the Fellowship’s growth. “Bill’s Story,” “Doctor Bob’s Nightmare,” and one other personal history from the first edition were retained intact; three were edited and one of these was retitled; new versions of two stories were written, with new titles; thirty completely new stories were added; and the story section was divided into three parts, under the same headings that are used now.
In the third edition, Part I (“Pioneers of A.A.”) was left unchanged. Nine of the stories in Part II (“They Stopped in Time”) were carried over from the second edition; eight new stories were added. In Part III (“They Lost Nearly All”), eight stories were retained; five new ones were added.
This fourth edition includes the Twelve Concepts for World Service and revises the three sections of personal stories as follows. One new story has been added to Part I, and two that originally appeared in Part III have been repositioned there; six stories have been deleted. Six of the stories in Part II have been carried over, eleven new ones have been added, and eleven taken out[…]”
AA World Services, Inc.