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Group Conscious & The 7th Tradition


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#1 Randy M

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Posted 16 July 2008 - 07:37 PM

Dear ACA Friends...during a recent group conscious meeting an ACA group I attend voted to give $500 (excess 7th Tradition collections) to the church we meet at. (note: we already pay the church $150 each quarter for rent) The group also voted (during the same group conscious) to contribute $500 to a scholarship fund for members to attend the group's annual retreat.

Another meeting I attend would never allow this. 7th Tradition money goes to support the meeting (rent, literature, coffee, cups, etc.), and anything left over goes to the WSO office.

My question: are there limits/guidelines in the literature (traditions, sanctioned literature) that could help guide how we can spend our money. Is a group conscious the way to decide this?

Thanks,

Randy M
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#2 75Janice

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Posted 17 May 2010 - 07:18 AM

I just stumbled across this. It was shocking to me. ACA has zero religious affiliation. Giving large sums to a church and, particularly, for its religious education program endorses that religion in violation of the tradition. ACA has no outside issues - donating the money gives the local meeting a plethora of outside issues. The fellowship needs cash! If members appreciate the church, they can join the church and contribute as a member or make a donation as an individual. Filtering the contributions through ACA drags the group into the church. A group donation of like-minded people acting as ACAs but not as ACA itself, could make a donation, IMO. Maybe they aren't WSO ACA meetings. Other groups abound.


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#3 AllieOop

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Posted 17 May 2010 - 07:26 AM

I know that our group pays rent to the church, and twice a year during "their" religious celebrations, we send an extra dontation as a gift to the church for being kind to us and allowing us the use of their church. I'm not sure what the rules are about that, or if it's simply a vote or not. We vote about it.
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#4 75Janice

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Posted 17 May 2010 - 11:29 AM

Obviously, I am not the ACA gift expert. I have researched church state relationships in the U.S., however. A token gift about the size of a months rent or even a few months rent in gratitude is appropriate. When ACA funds in large amounts go to the very core of the church's mission and have nothing to do with rent or goodwill, alarms are set off for me. It would be interesting to see how other meetings manage the issue. ACA and other Twelve Step groups probably need the rental space for the public in churches.

this very issue was discussed in OA and, of course, we're a different program. How do we welcome nonbelievers among us when we're subsidizing a religion at its most basic core. Treats at coffee hour would be more neutral. It raises issues. Since ACA is a private group, no limits are present that would bar government aid. This whole topic is endlessly fascinating for me. My family were targets of religious persecution. Instinctively, I defend the minority view. I grew up in an extremely large metropolitan area and was exposed to many minority views. I am proud that I defend minority rights but my bias should be stated.

I was looking for another very recent post and could not find it under General or Newcomer discussions. This topic fell into my lap by accident. It is an old post that no one replied to it. It certainly got past me! I am curious that no one responded. I thought discussion of this might shed light on the Seventh Tradition and group conscious practice. It is bizarre the way I discovered it.

Janice
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#5 idigress

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Posted 09 August 2010 - 11:51 AM

And now I've just stumbled upon this topic.
I found the answer in the BRB on pg609 under the topic Group Funds- Seventh Tradition-

"...fund/flow model is based on a 60/40 disbursement..."

And on pg608 the autonomy in Tradition Four is explained.

In observing the Traditions, I feel it's important that both Tradition 1 & Tradition 6 also be taken into consideration. The Traditions keep us united.
J.

Edited by idigress, 09 August 2010 - 11:59 AM.

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#6 DavidG

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Posted 13 August 2010 - 12:07 PM

yes. I read tradition 4 as well....

I hate it when people come across with black and white rules...

don't do that... you can't do this...!!!

[its in the laundry list....lol...]

we had a group conscience meeting once in my goo-
to change the venue for our meeting...

the reason was to have a space where members could
smoke during the meeting!

[now work that one out...]

I made up myown slogan: "we have the right to be wrong"

that gives us the freedom but not licence... B)

there is a subtle difference...


-D.
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#7 75Janice

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Posted 13 August 2010 - 02:10 PM

I am confounded that a group that says it is spiritual but not religious is overtly subsidizing a religious mission. Clearly, I am not neutral about this manner. The media talks about culture wars becoming even more intense. A recent post discussed a bifurcation of AA meetings along the red/ blue lines. No, we're not religious we just give every penny of our money to a religious mission. I was raised in a religious cult that was persecuted from the beginning. My father was hired from coal mines to serve as a body guard. Other Christian groups threw ammonia bombs at women and children, not at men. Tales of what Hitler did in Germany and occupied lands to member of my foo religion were terrifying.My uncles ended up in federal prison. I believe strongly in religious neutrality as the fair way. No group in Manhattan would dream of donating such a large percentage to a religious mission. As far as I am concerned, choosing one church means rejection of others.

I am not neutral. It triggers me immensely. I've lived in communities where vigilance is maintained. My reaction is based on my triggers. Meetings in Manhattan or Mass or CA must have a different outlook than those in Bible Belt states. I'm active in a mainstream church now. Therefore, I am a beneficiary of missions that must be funded. As people have noted, I've been around for quite a while now. I'm at a loss for the fevered pitch of red/blue. I prefer compromises. My history makes me afraid of imposed religion. I recall people not calling me when my father died b/c I was a different religion. So it is safer to forget that I existed.

I don't know if this will be deleted. The tension about it is great.
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#8 DavidG

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Posted 14 August 2010 - 11:44 PM

If i was in a group where one person disagreed strongly with a course of action
I would seriously consider reviewing that action.

I disagree with populism where a simple straw vote will do away with individual
rights.

I agree with the right and necessity of discussing and debating issues
and trying at least to find common ground.

David.
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#9 idigress

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Posted 21 August 2010 - 03:58 PM

Regarding opposing viewpoints, I appreciate the 5th Concept.

J.
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