THE ORTHODOX MOVEMENT
My God, this is nothing like the Alcoholics Anonymous I once
knew - this is more like A.A. light.
Anonymous Long-Term Member
THE ORTHODOX MOVEMENT
Back to the Basics
We have left undone those
things which we ought to have done; and we have done those things
which we ought not to have done and there is no health in us.
Book of Common Prayer
Dr. Bob died, many changes took place in A.A. which were disturbing
to the early members in Cleveland and Akron. Ideas and concepts
to which Dr. Bob was opposed began to come to pass. Ideas which
were believed to have been regulated before Dr. Bob died were
suddenly resurrected from dusty shelves.
Clarence saw it, the calming and sane of Doc was no longer there.
Bill and the Board of Trustees in New York had free reign to
do with A.A. as they pleased.
Orthodox Movement was comprised of a small group of staunch,
old time A.A. members and friends. Among them were Henrietta
Seiberling, Bill Van H., Bert T., and Royal S. Clarence, though
associated with this movement, was on its periphery. But Clarence
did correspond with and make telephone calls to and receive
thanks from members.
S. - an attorney - wrote several letters to the Board of Trustees.
Royal had been instrumental in helping drawing up the incorporation
of the Grapevine and in helping with other legal matters
concerning A.A. The A.A. General Service Archives appeared to
contain no responses to the Royal S. inquiries. In fact, though
required, none of the original letters from Royal or the other
orthodox group people were made available to this writer. Copies,
however, were given to the author by Clarence, as part of a
collection of archival material saved by Clarence over the years.
the Statement of 1948 was replaced by the Statement of 1950
and all references to the 1948 statement of policy, which was
endorsed by Dr. Bob, were seemingly removed from the New York
Orthodox Movement's goals were to keep the A.A. movement true
to its original intent and purpose. Orthodox members felt that
the new direction which A.A. was beginning to take would water
down or dilute the effectiveness and success which the movement
to that date had achieved.
members of the Orthodox Movement printed up copies of the Statement
of 1948 to disseminate to the A.A. membership along with their
correspondence to the Board of Trustees. They campaigned at
meetings, asking other members to query the Board as to what
Seiberling was attending meetings with Bill van H. and Bill
D. (A.A. #3) and relating developments to the A.A. members.
King School Group - A.A. Group #1 - Dr. Bob's group - was one
of the places that they went. However, except for the correspondence
and copies (which are in Appendix
G), little is known about the efforts of this short lived
movement. All that is known is that it did not succeed in its
attempts to keep the movement to what it believed was A.A.'s
Van H. wrote Clarence on January 8, 1951:
get too exercised about the big promotion [by Bill Wilson and
the Board of Trustees against the movement] - Like the saying
"There will always be an England," there will always be a few
of us old steady heads.