“Grace In Addiction”

Here’s an excerpt from Mockingbird Press’ new zine titled “Grace In Addiction: What The Church Can Learn from Alcoholics Anonymous“:

Alcoholics Anonymous, the Twelve Steps, and the world of recovery at large represent an untapped and highly valuable resource for the Christian Church. Not only can the church learn a great deal from AA about the nature of addiction, but also about the reality of how God works in the lives of troubled people. In this sense, AA can help the church rediscover a great deal about itself, much of which has been sadly lost, at least in the majority of the church’s current mainstream expressions. Specifically, AA can recall to the Church its understanding of the human condition as intrinsically impaired, of God primarily as rescuer and of spiritual growth as a cyclical rather than linear phenomenon. AA also offers an extraordinary model for how those understandings play out on a corporate and organizational level. The aim of this article, then, is to re-establish both a basis of hope for the church and a basis for the church as hope

I wonder what Dick B. thinks about this…

(Thank you C.B.-S.)

  • AnnaZed

    Oh good Lord, I can actually feel bile rise in my throat. This writer doesn’t even have the most basic comprehension of doctrinaire Christian theology. In all Christan denominations (besides Buchmanism) God is not a miracle on demand entity. Steppism alone makes that claim.

  • BusBozo

    At lest the writer points out that the spirituality of AA is in fact religious in nature. “Grace” seems to have been a favorite of Bill W. and AAers in general. It just occurred to me that AA lacks hymns, sure they got plenty of chants, and prayers, but a bit of song would be a big draw I would think.
    Which reminds me of a very funny South Park episode about Easter and the “Hare Club for Men”. Now them guys do some heaving hymns.

  • hulahoop

    Yeah, I get it. Redeeming love, accepting others, redemption…I’ve thought about these aspects when comparing AA to Christianity. I’ve done a lot of that since my time in AA. AA takes what it wants from Chistianity and leaves the rest. Just as Christianity takes what it wants from AA and leaves the rest.

    Churches are now starting to offer their own version of 12 step programs. Celebrate Recovery comes to mind. It’s AA with a twist of Jesus added to make it more palatable to Christians. AA is a religion with no particular God to make it more palatable to athiests and agnostics. Even better, you get to make up one of your own! I’ve decided my higher power would be Obi Wan Kenobi if I had one because the church and AA could learn a lot from him too.

    “Who’s the more foolish, the fool, or the fool who follows him?”

  • hulahoop

  • What could a christian church learn from AA. Some really cool slogans,you can create your own higher power or some things are better left in the basement.

  • AntiDenial

    OMG- AA is going tp preach to the churches-how narcissistic is that?
    Incredibly arrogant.I can relate to the bile coming up in my throat comment….
    Jeez-it makes me feel protective of the churches! leave them alone AA!
    You are already in their rooms renting space,you do enough damage!

  • hulahoop

    insane says What could a christian church learn from AA. Some really cool slogans,you can create your own higher power or some things are better left in the basement.

    The Christian faith has learned (based on their adaption of the 12 steps – Celebrate Recovery) they are missing out on an untapped market…although it seems a lot of people and organizations are marketing their efforts to the same untapped market. Recovery and rehaab are big business and big money.

    Churches of every denomination allow AA to practice in their basements while fully knowing AA is not inline with their own beliefs. Is the rent money that important? Is the potential for future prospects that important? Important enough to set aside your personal beliefs and the dogma you preach and should live by?

    I travel a lot. I drive to most of the places I go to. I listen to a lot of religious radio as well as NPR to give me a break from the juke box rotation of music I hear on the radio. A lot of the of old school preachers talk about new religions and false prophets. I think AA fits both of those descriptions. Someone quoted an author the other day saying the twelve steps might be the saving grace not only for alcoholics and addicts, but for everyone. (I would have to look up the post to be specific.) That is part of why I think it is important for people to speak out against it.

    The twelve steps are a sham religion a lot of people are making a lot of money off of. Meanwhile, a lot of innocent people are living in misery wondering why they don’t get it while following a lot of people who pretend they do get it. (Maybe some of them do. I don’t know.) Or people are actually dying and killing themselves while wondering the same thing.

    I watched my mother dive in to the Christian faith hoping she would have some sort of supernatural experience delivered to her compliments of God. She didn’t. She went in to a huge depression over it. It was like she felt God was purposefully not choosing her because she wasn’t working a good enough program. Little did she realize she had four children who were healthy, she was healthy and had all of the basic creature comforts. Maybe that was blessing enough. She wanted MORE.

    A Christian church could learn that just because someone isn’t living their way of living as a living, breathing lifeforce, and just because people don’t worship their particular God does not mean they are going to hell. AA preaches you must do the twelve steps or die or live a horrible life just like the church does. I guess what I am saying is there is a lot NOT be learned from AA.

    Insane, I am going stop here because I do not want come off as some bible thumping zealot. I do not want to alienate the readers of this blog who hold different beliefs than I do other than the thumpers because there is no debating with a thumper. Mostly, there are a lot of things the Christian church should not learn from AA even though it seems they are. You either believe it or you don’t. Feel free to contact FTG for my email addy if you want to discuss this further.

  • Hulahoop I was aiming at thumpers I feel bad you got in the sights.

  • causeandeffect

    Hulahoop, I think you and insane are actually in agreement. I took the comment as sarcasm anyway. And I don’t think anyone here thinks of you as a zealot. I find the subject discussed from a Christian standpoint interesting. I doubt that anyone here would disagree, even if they are atheists, that from a Christian standpoint, AA is a new false religion and a Group of Drunks is as false of a God as you can get (well besides the bedpan and such). I’m sure I’m not the only one here who has inwardly cringed when an AA states that they have a superior relationship with gawd than the leaders of churches. I hope you don’t feel inhibited in expressing your viewpoint.

  • Johnny Crash

    Churches want meetings not because of the rent they want the meetings because of the crowd ….the crowd infront of the church …its a form of attraction people look and say what a big young congrigation ill go on Sunday ….or look those people have found something … common trick at bars and nitelcibs screen the people make them wait a line forms now more people wait …no line he place must suck