MBAIAA Newsletter – October 2019

Published on October 17, 2019

Step 10 – “Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.”

Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions.  Page 88

“We can try to stop making unreasonable demands upon those we love. We can show kindness where we had shown none. With those we dislike we can begin to practice justice and courtesy, perhaps going out of our way to understand and help them.

Whenever we fail any of these people, we can promptly admit it – to ourselves always, and to them also, when the admission would be helpful. Courtesy, kindness, justice, and love are the keynotes by which we may come into harmony with practically anybody. When in doubt we can     always pause, saying, “Not my will, but Thine, be done.” And we can often ask ourselves, “Am I doing to others as I would have them do to me – today?”

Alcoholics Anonymous Events To Plan For

There are lots of opportunities for fellowship and fun in the coming weeks.  Visit our events calendar for a complete list of upcoming events.

Monterey Intergroup Birthday / Speaker Meeting
Saturday, October 26th, 2019 @ 7:30 pm

Hosted this month by the Big Book Thumpers meeting  that meets every Monday at 7:30 at the Center for Spiritual Living at 400 W. Franklin St. in Monterey

This is a monthly birthday meeting held on the last Saturday of each month (except for December when the meeting is held along with a holiday banquet ). The first part of the meeting includes a presentation of birthday medallions for those celebrating annual A.A. anniversaries and all are invited to participate. Birthdays are followed by an A.A. speaker who shares for 40 to 45 minutes and the meeting ends about 9 pm. Coffee is typically ready no later than 7 pm. Arrive early for good parking, fellowship and a great seat!

Monterey High School Cafeteria
Herman Drive at Larkin, Monterey CA 93940

Holiday Alcathons

There are preparations in the works for the Holiday Alcathons (Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Years. Please consider being of service at one or all of these events. Maybe your home group can take a timeslot at the marathon meetings and host. Call Central Office for more information.

News From General Service

This note from Susan, our DCMC.

An amazing story about the web developer that created the Meeting Guide App. You can read the entire article here – Fall 2019 Box 459 – AA Newsletter.

The Meeting Guide

This is the first installment of a new Box 4-5-9 series on the technology that is changing the way Alcoholics Anonymous communicates to suffering alcoholics and interacts with its members.  Josh R., a web developer, did most of his drinking in New York City. In 2013, he decided a geographic would help and he moved to San Jose. Unlike most geographics, this one turned out to be fruitful — for both Josh and for Alcoholics Anonymous.

Once in San Jose, Josh got sober, found a sponsor and started going to A.A. meetings in the area. Only problem was, the local central office website — while it listed meetings — wasn’t so user-friendly for someone using a mobile phone. Like most A.A. websites, the site had been developed before mobile design came into general use. Such sites work fine for someone on a computer, but these days, A.A. sites get more than twice as many visitors from handheld devices as from traditional desktops or laptops.

“Essentially what I did,” Josh says, “is take all the meeting listings and export them to an Excel file with links to directions, and then made my own little app, just for myself. That’s where the germ of the idea for the Meeting Guide app developed — just me trying to find meetings.”

From early sobriety, Josh has been a supporter of intergroups and central offices. The intergroup rep from his home group suggested that Josh develop his personal app into an app that all A.A.s in Santa Clara County could use. Josh agreed and conferred with the Santa Clara County central office. Eventually, Josh went further than originally envisioned. He came up with the idea to develop a WordPress plug-in that intergroup/central offices, areas and districts across the country (and the world) could use, so that the meetings they listed on their sites could be added to the app and automatically updated every 12 hours.

A turning point for Josh was making a presentation of his app to the National A.A. Technology Workshop (NAATW), where he received support and feedback. The free app was launched in November 2015 with seven connected A.A. websites — those in Austin, Mesa (Arizona), Oakland, Philadelphia, Portland (Oregon), San Francisco and San Jose.

Today, Meeting Guide is connected to 326 local A.A. organization websites. Getting connected wasn’t easy for all of them. Some local sites had to find new web servants, while others had to draft new policies and procedures, sign up for new web hosting, and try new soft- ware. In several cases, group consciences were sought to settle concerns about the Sixth Tradition and the future of the app: Would it always be free? Does this represent affiliation with an outside entity?

In an era when smartphones dominate, Meeting Guide is a simple, useful tool for newcomers and oldtimers alike — one that standardizes meeting information so that it is always readily available and up to date. Recognizing this, Josh did something unusual, but which is also completely within the spirit of the Fellowship: he gave the Meeting Guide app to Alcoholics Anonymous, for free.

“I realized,” Josh says, “that the only way we could continue to grow was to pass it on.”

In the fall of 2018, A.A.W.S., Inc. licensed Meeting Guide and put together a working group of consultants, employees and trustees to help bring it to fruition, and an updated version was released in summer 2019.

To see current IGR minutes and financial reports CLICK HERE

A Note From Jana

I have just returned from Mesa Arizona where the annual Intergroup Office Administrator conference was held. It is an annual event where “special workers” gather to share information about their jobs and responsibilities of running Central offices. Our fellowship has much in common with the fellowships across the country and internationally as well.

A big focus of the conference was safety. We all want people to feel safe going to meetings.. This includes physical safety as well as comfort in sharing without judgement and also the fact that what is said in meetings will stay there.

We should all be aware of predatory behavior and speak up when it is observed. “Love and tolerance is our code” is the standard we  follow, however, this does NOT include criminal behavior in or around meetings.

General Service has this document on safety in meetings – Safety and AA  Our Common Welfare.  In addition, there is a Safety Card that can be read at meetings here – Safety Card.

Other topics that were covered at the conference were fundraising, protecting anonymity, websites, ,phones and 12 step calls, and many other facets of running a Central Office in 2019. Speaking of websites, received high praise for it’s ability to transmit information. A big thank you goes to Mike and Alex, our website team.

Autumn is upon us, Holiday time lies ahead and it can be a time full of love and celebration. It can also be a time of loneliness, fear and isolation for some of us.

Be the hand of AA that reaches out to those who are still suffering

We Are Always In Need Of People To Be Of Service

If you are interested in being a part of what we do here at Central Office, I am always looking for office volunteers. People to be on the other end of the phone when someone reaches out for help. It is generally a four hour commitment (either 9:30 – 1:30 or 1:30 – 5:30) 1 day per week. Currently, I need a few people to keep on a list of those that are willing to fill in for these positions once in a while. Call or come by and let’s talk!

In closing, please feel free to stop by Central Office. If you are one of the ‘Trusted Servants’ at a meeting (Secretary, Treasurer,etc,) and you have any questions about the responsibilities of that position, don’t hesitate to ask what those responsibilities might be.

I am in the office Monday, Tuesday and Thursday from 9:30 -5:00.