Service Committments in NA

Service Commitments in NA
There are so many ways a person can do service and give back to NA. Giving to the 7th tradition is doing service. Sharing is doing service. Helping an addict (giving your number out, welcoming a new comer, giving a hug) these are all ways of doing service. I have said many times that the Indy area has the strongest, closest fellowship that I have ever seen (and I have experienced the NA fellowship in many different areas/states). But, in my opinion, we also have a very low percentage of addicts involved and participating at the area level. There are always so many positions open in the Indy area. How do people take so much and not give back? If someone gets clean in NA and after 1 or 2 years doesn’t get involved it just seems wrong to me. Even at the group level, it’s hard to get people to commit to GSR and/or Secretary positions. Part of this might be better driven if the sponsors in our area expected more commitment from their sponcees. In other states groups hold elections (in their “business meetings” or “group conscience meetings”)and addicts often have to run for those positions. Sometimes 3 or 4 people will run for Chairperson or a secretary position – just at group meeting levels. Coffee makers cling to their position almost for dear life. They are trusted servants often holding keys to the place where the meetings are held. They have responsibility to the group; finding speakers, showing up early and setting up, breaking down and closing up. It’s an honor to serve NA in any way. If you don’t have a commitment – why it that? If you do (sponsors), maybe this should be forward to your sponcess. I’m just sayin. . .

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6 thoughts on “Service Committments in NA

  1. I find that there is a lot of drama at the area level. So I tend to steer clear of that. I think that, as I have gotten clean, my life has become very full. It is not easy to set aside time to commit to going to a committee meeting each month. There are many ways to give back. Serving the home group is very important. But many let the few do all the work. Why can’t members come early and stay late to set up and tear down? Even if it seems like it’s covered. The spirit of willingness brings the group closer. I am glad there are many ways to serve. I am glad that answering the phone, picking up an addict, sponsoring, greeting new faces, and carrying the message all count as service work as well.

  2. I agree. It’s ridiculous. And frankly, we don’t really start to really progress in recovery until we start selfless service aka giving back. There are multiple meetings in need of trusted servants in our area and three unfilled positions at area in addition to the subcommittees being undermanned. I mean, how can we expect a subcommittee chairperson to do something like public relations if he doesn’t have anyone on his committee? It’s crazy. I’ve been clean for almost ten years, and I’ve never gone more than a few months without a structured service position and never not done some kind of service. I guess it shows how selfish and shortsighted many addicts are in this area. I do think that sponsors need to tell sponsees to step up and take a position. Sell the idea of service. That’s all.

  3. It has been nice to get back to ASC after being gone for about 12 years. I served as area chair for 2 years and many other service commitments over the bast decade and a half. While being gone I said i was doing service by doing these things too. The fact is, greeting newcomers is not service. Neither is sponsoring or answering the phone. These are all vital parts of our program and are done so we can stay clean.(Vital means “necessary to live.) It is not giving back to do what you must be doing all the time. That is like patting yourself on the back for paying the light bill, or going to the grocery or in my case, bathing:). Service takes time and is a sacrifice. Most of us have better things to do on Sunday morning. But I now realize I do it because I love NA and want to give back what was freely given to me by addicts who also sacrificed their time away from their “full lives” so I still have a place to go. None of this is to guilt anybody into service or pat myself on the back (i missed 12 years). But let’s call service what it is: work and sacrifice.

  4. I am a firm believer that service is vital. I mentioned to someone at a meeting the other night that the apathy we see towards service is a significant threat to NA in Indianapolis. Meetings don’t “just happen” – members make a commitment to set up, pay rent, etc. NA as a whole in Indy exists because of member’s service. Without people serving at the area level, there would be no meeting directory, no events, no helpline, etc. Frankly, “I don’t have time” is no excuse. We make time for what we think is important. I have had service commitments since I came to NA, and can’t imagine not having at least one – usually more. Yes there is drama sometimes at the area level. So what? It’s an excellent opportunity to practice some acceptence.

  5. I have to attend morning meetings due to my work schedule and the majority of these meetings don’t have GSR’s. I don’t understand it because the meetings are well attended. I was bought up to do service work. I can only keep what I have by giving it away. Black or vetted

  6. I have been selected as the GSR for one of the morning meetings here in the city. It is a meeting that is well attended for the most part. Many times the meeting will begin on time with but a few people; however, before half the meeting is over, there are often 30 or more addicts in attendance. For a couple of months now, due to another commitment (as a result of growth in recovery), I have only been able to attend the meeting itself every other week. I have attended all of the Area meetings though and have brought the information back to the group. We have been without a secretary for about 3 months now. The previous secretary we had would show up right at the start time of the meeting, but there are others that would set up the meeting, be sure the room was open and get things ready and done. Announcements have been made weekly for at least 3 months about the need for a new secretary and GSR for this meeting, not only at the meeting itself, but also at other meetings. Until recently, there has been no response, but a lot of complaining. We have also had those who are not home group members or in a service position at the meeting step up and filled in, but took our meeting material and the meeting was left without our literature, key tags, readings and 7th. Tradition for a couple of weeks. As the GSR, when I go to Area and there is anything to take a group conscience on, if I vote it is only my opinion that I am representing because no one at the meeting participates when a business meeting is called to bring the group’s conscience to Area on whatever matter is before the Area. Help us out here!!!!!!!!!!!!!! What is the solution? There are those who do have a willingness to serve, but do not have the suggested quantity of clean time. Observing their program of recovery and their willingness though speaks volumes about the quality of their recovery program without a focus on the quantity of time. Should they be disqualified? What if it were a small community in Kentucky with only 7 addicts seeking recovery and the one with the most clean time has 4 months? Maybe I misunderstand our definition of an NA meeting and an NA group. If anyone has the solution, please present it to us. Thank you.


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