CATHOLIC DIGEST, Vol.25 (12) 111, October, 1961
HOW ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS OPERATES
by Collie Small
Alcoholics Anonymous is a "fellowship of men and women who share their experience, strength, and hope with each other," in an effort to stay sober and "help others to recover from alcoholism." The only requirement for membership is a desire to stop drinking. There are no dues, no rules, only 12 suggested steps to sobriety, which resemble the Christian's confession of faith. They indicate the members willingness to share his troubles with God, as he understands Him, and with at least one other A.A. member.
The strength of the whole, in A.A., is more than the sum of its parts. When an A.A. feels an overwhelming urge to drink, he can hurry to an A.A. meeting (nightly in big cities, twice a week in smaller towns) to gain support from his fellow members. If the impulse comes at an off hour, a quick phone call to a fellow A.A. usually gives him the courage he needs to abstain.