The Dick B. Recovery Radio Interview on July 6, 2012 of Recovered AA Christian Recovery Leader Roger M. of Huntington Beach, CA
Copyright 2012 Anonymous. All rights reserved
You May Hear the Roger M. Radio Interview Right Now:
You may listen to Dick B. interview Christian Recovery leader Roger M. on the July 6, 2012, episode of the “Christian Recovery Radio with Dick B.” show here:
Episodes of the “Christian Recovery Radio with Dick B.” show are archived at:
Synopsis of the Roger M. Radio Interview
Roger is a member of the Speakers Bureau of the International Christian Recovery Coalition. He is a Christian Recovery Leader who has attended just about every conference and meeting that my son Ken and I have conducted over the past three years. He has made a point of absorbing as much information as possible about the Christian origins, history, founding, original “Christian Fellowship” program, and successes of early Alcoholics Anonymous in Akron, Ohio. More important, perhaps, he passes along this important information to others as widely as possible—particularly in Orange County and elsewhere in Southern California. And he does so at A.A. meetings, Christian Fellowship meetings, Teen Challenge gatherings, and other venues.
Roger has become a leader at His Place Church in Westminster, California, where there is a fast-growing A.A. meeting each Friday at the church’s new location. (The Church just moved from Huntington Beach and merged with another, larger church in Westminster.)
And Roger, on behalf of the Pastor Joe Furey and of His Place Church, recently hosted an International Christian Recovery Coalition workshop of leaders—one focused on the topic of our new book: Stick with the Winners How to Conduct More Effective 12-Step Recovery Meetings Using Conference-Approved Literature: A Dick B. Guide for Christian Leaders and Workers in the Recovery Arena (available now at http://www.dickb.com/Christian-Recovery-Guide-files/
The Roger M. story starts out with the familiar drunk tale. Roger was raised in Whittier, California by parents, and with two brothers, who were not alcoholics. He was raised a Catholic. He attended University of Southern California. He became a salesman, married, had two children, and became a born again Christian in 1977. Then came trouble! He left his family. He was fired from his job. He filed for bankruptcy. And three different times, he was sent to A.A. by the courts.
He went through a treatment program, took the 12-Steps, and came to realize that the A.A. program was biblically based. When Roger was about 11 or 12 years sober, a sponsee handed him a copy of the Dick B. book, The Good Book and the Big Book: A.A.’s Roots in the Bible (www.dickb.com/goodbook.shtml). He went to a church and there met his pastor—also a recovered alcoholic. And he developed a passion to learn and speak about God’s plan and his potential ministry.
Roger spoke and speaks at many an A.A. meeting about his relationship with Jesus Christ and the Bible. Many listeners have said, “I didn’t know that,” or “I’ve never heard that.” A few voiced their angst, saying “You can’t talk about that in an A.A. meeting.” And his typical response was to ask: Do you want me to tell you the truth or talk about something that is not true.
At His Place Church, there is a Men’s Stag Meeting and a Women’s Meeting, each lasting about an hour and a half. About 60 to 80 men attend the Men’s meeting. The announcement at the beginning is: “This meeting has two texts—the Holy Bible and the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous.” It is made clear that no one present needs to accept the leaders’ and speakers’ concepts.” But there is a loving and kind willingness to hear from all—except those who might be under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Participants are told: “If there’s something on your mind, this is the place to go.”
The meetings talk about the 12-Steps, the Bible, and have the Dick B. A.A. history books on hand (www.dickb.com/titles.shtml). There is sharing on the roots of A.A. and Jesus Christ. There is substantial reference to A.A. General Services Conference-approved Pamphlet P-53 which contains the biographical sketches and the last major talks of Cofounders Dr. Bob and Bill W.
The talk by Dr. Bob was given in 1948; and at pages 13 and 14, Dr. Bob is quoted on the following specific points: (1) In the early days, the stories didn’t amount to anything, and there were no Twelve Steps or Twelve Traditions. (2) Oldtimers believed the answers to their problems were in the Bible. (3) The parts considered “absolutely essential” were the Book of James, Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount, and 1 Corinthians 13 (www.dickb.com/JamesClub.shtml). (4) They held daily meetings. (5) The Twelve Steps were not crystallized into “terse and tangible form” until 1938. (6) Dr. Bob didn’t write the 12 Steps and had nothing to do with the writing of them. (7) But the basic ideas came from the study and effort that had been going on in the Bible.
His Place is, as Roger calls it, a “Recovery Church.” Pastor Joe Furey comments that everyone has something to recover from. Commonly there is a broken relationship with Jesus Christ.
Roger pointed out how widely he distributes copies of Pamphlet P-53—The Cofounders of Alcoholics Anonymous. He has never seen copies at the meetings where he speaks or attends; so he brings them there. He talks about the stories in the back of the First Edition of the Big Book—stories replete references to God and the Bible. Yet some AAs say you can’t talk about that and that A.A. is a cult. But illustrative, for Roger, is the following statement by Bill Wilson made in a letter written in 1940. It can be found at page 114 of A.A.’s Conference-approved As Bill Sees It. Roger read the following in full from the page where Bill Wilson states:
At first, the remedy for my personal difficulties seemed so obvious that I could not imagine any alcoholic turning the proposition down were it properly presented to him.
Believing so firmly that Christ can do anything, I had the unconscious conceit to suppose that He would do everything through me—right then and in the manner I chose. After six long months, I had to admit that not a soul had surely laid hold of the Master—not excepting myself.
This brought me to the good healthy realization that there were plenty of situations left in the world over which I had no personal power—that if I was ready to admit that to be the case with alcohol, so I must make the same admission with respect to much else.
I would have to be still and know that He, not I, was God.
Roger closed with a quote from the Big Book: “God either is or He isn’t.” That “God” is the God of the Bible, he said. And it is my job to tell the truth in love—the love of Christ.