Dick B. interviews Christian recovery worker William B. on the April 8, 2013, episode of the “Christian Recovery Radio with Dick B.” show
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You may hear Dick B. interview Christian recovery worker William B. on the April 8, 2013, episode of the “Christian Recovery Radio with Dick B.” show here:
Episodes of the “Christian Recovery Radio with Dick B.” show are archived at:
Today’s guest could be called “The Rocket.” This recovered Christian alcoholic has literally torn up the turf in the short period since I have come to know him and his wife Mary. William B. is from Delaware. Not very long ago, he joined his wife in a massive Internet service to God and those about him. William was taken with the importance of Alcoholics Anonymous history. And with the vital role that God, His Son Jesus Christ, and the Bible have played in the field of recovery from alcoholism and addiction–particularly since the 1850’s in the United States and certainly in the State of Vermont during the Christian upbringing of A.A. cofounders William G. Wilson and Dr. Robert H. Smith (known as Bill W. and Dr. Bob).
I will not gild the lily any further. But I will say a hearty “Thank you!” to William for article after article, historical item after historical item, and fidelity to accurate reporting that he has brought to the 12 Step recovery scene and to the Christian Recovery Movement.
At this point, I’ll ask William to tell you about his family, his religious and educational background, his bouts with alcoholism and addiction, his association with the Twelve Steps, and his passion for getting out to people accurate, documented A.A. history information for those suffering souls who want God’s help in recovery and are willing to go to any length to get it. William will also tell us about his Web site, his experience with it, and his plans for bringing the option of turning to God for help and bringing that effective source back into review for Christians and for others.
Take it away, William!
The bulk of the interview is about William’s remarkable and valuable daily posts on his internet website (http://williambagley28.wordpress.com/). Today, for example, there were 300 visits to this new site. William began by speaking of the importance to him in the recovery scene of God, Jesus Christ, the Bible, and Alcoholics Anonymous History. He reported how he had been captive of the insidious insanity of the first drink for 25 years. He couldn’t stop. He couldn’t control it. It turned on him. And chaos was the result. There was personal misery, despair, and fear. But he grasped the importance of helping other people—a mission he faithfully pursues today.
He began his drugs and alcohol at age 13, having grown up in Newport Beach, California. He got into difficulties with the law, was locked up, and suffered from the spiritual malady. He briefly worked as a mechanic and attended college. Then, for seventeen years, he began Bible study—studying Greek, Hebrew, and English. He studied to be a pastor. And he had entered a rehab, but learned no principles or what to do about recovery – the information was vague and was not absorbed.
Which brought up the subject which has recently arrested the attention of action of Dick B. and his son Ken B. The subject is teaching! Early AAs had skillful teaching and instructors. Dr. Bob’s wife had been a teacher. Henrietta Seiberling was a highly educated Vassar graduate. T. Henry Williams was a brilliant inventor and had been a Sunday school teacher. His wife Clarace had studied to be a Baptist missionary. And, on the East Coast, Rev. Samuel M. Shoemaker, Jr. was a teacher without equal. As Rector of Calvary Church, he preached sermons, led Oxford Group meetings, wrote more than 30 books and many articles. In fact, it was Shoemaker who taught Bill Wilson the principles and “practical program of action” that Wilson codified into his 1939 Big Book and Twelve Steps.
And the topic that seems most needful in recovery today is teaching and classes. William has featured the Joe and Charlie talks on his website. He is featuring Dr. Bob’s wife Anne—called the “Mother of A.A.” He has featured the Dick B. books and articles. He is convinced that “pictures” with “captions explaining the person in the picture” are a forceful and effective way of teaching and helping remembrance by the newcomer. In fact, Joe and Charlie Big Book Seminars were peopled with photos on the walls of the early A.A. founders, trustees, Rockefeller supporters and others. And Dr. Bob’s Home in Akron has a tremendous display of many of the A.A. pioneers of Akron Number One and AA. Accompanying the pictures are explanatory materials.
And Dick discussed with William three things which will be stressed in future books, articles, posts, meetings, seminars and conferences: (1) Workshops showing newcomers how to “Carry this message”—a simple, concise working instruction on the A.A. rules of the road, the Big Book, the Steps, the groups and meetings, relevant literature, Sponsorship, A.A. History, and the role of God, Jesus Christ, and the Bible in pioneer A.A.. (2) Workshops to train sponsors—and this topic and workshop is on the agenda for our upcoming conference in Ft. Worth. There is a need for sponsors to know their history, their Big Book, the biblical ties, how to take the 12 Steps, and what to tell the newcomer to do to attain a new life with and after sobriety. (3) Workshops to train listeners—newcomers, sponsors, and old-timers alike on the origins, history, founding, original “old school A.A. program,” and the successes achieved; and how to use Conference-approved literature today to teach the pioneer principles and practices involving God, Jesus Christ, the Bible, the Big Book, and the 12 Steps so that they can be melded and applied today among those who want God’s help and are willing to go to any lengths to seek and receive it.
In his closing remarks, William stressed these points: (1) The new presentations of photos and captions to make the program simple, vivid, and real for those in recovery. (2) Showing the use of and importance to Dr. Bob of stressing the Bible for recovery. (3) Conducting daily Quiet Time—a “must” in early A.A. (4) Emphasizing the commandments in Ephesians 5:18: “And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit.”
For further information, contact Dick B. at 808 874 4876 or firstname.lastname@example.org