Gratitude Month Our Chance to Say “Thank You!”
The first official recognition of an A.A. Gratitude Week, specifically designed to coincide with Thanksgiving week in the U.S. (Canada celebrates in October), occurred in 1956, when the Sixth General Service Conference approved the motion, stipulating that “this action be noted in the annual pre-Thanksgiving appeals to the groups for funds to help support A.A.’s worldwide services. “Three years later, Bill urged in a letter, “Gratitude should go forward, rather than backward … if you carry the message to still others, you will be making the best possible repayment for the help given to you. “ (As Bill Sees It, p.29).
For decades now, AAs in the U.S. have set aside all of November as Gratitude Month – marking the occasion with special contributions to the Offices around the country. In the spirit of the Seventh Tradition, A.A. is self-supporting through its members’ contributions, and frequently turns away money from well-meaning outside contributors. This means that the active input of every A.A. is vital to the Fellowship. Besides observing Gratitude Month, many a member uses the A.A. Birthday Plan – usually a dollar or two for each year of sobriety.
The Temecula Valley Central Office wants you to participate in Gratitude Month this year. We need your support. Here are a few suggestions.
We hesitate to do this every year, but are encouraged by the responsibility to provide for the office. We don’t like to ask for money. We believe it shouldn’t be necessary. We think financial support of your Temecula Valley Central Office is a definite obligation of every member and every group. Money is the cheapest thing we have to give. We no longer need or have to wait for contributions as we are now free to give contributions.
“WHERE MONEY AND SPIRITUALITY MIX”
Members celebrate sobriety by giving time, energy and money in support of our Twelfth Step—carrying the message—the basic service that the A.A. Fellowship offers. Members assure that group expenses are paid by putting money into the basket passed at each meeting. It is each member’s responsibility to support the services that have been requested by the A.A. Fellowship, to help facilitate A.A.’s vital Twelfth Step. Contributions are made in a spirit of sacrifice, and they honor A.A.’s code of “love and service.” Contributions also underscore the spiritual nature of our Fellowship and our mutual love and trust. We have found that these contributions are as important to each member as they are to the service centers supported.”
From MG-15 AA Guidelines on Finance
Courage To Change, El Carmelo Retreat House, January 16 thr 18
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