From the March 1973 magazine.

12. Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these Steps, we tried to carry this message to alcoholics, and to practice these principles in all our affairs.

"There were men like clergyman Sam Shoemaker, whose early teachings did so much to inspire Dr. Bob and me." Bill W. in AA Comes of Age

At the time of AA's beginning, the Rev. Canon Samuel M. Shoemaker was rector of Calvary Episcopal Church in New York City. He was active in the Oxford Group movement, from which AA derived many of its concepts. His friendship and love inspired our co-founders, and his teaching provided most of the principles embodied in our Twelve Steps.

ONE OF MY most treasured possessions is a pair of gold discs which I carry daily in my pocket, attached to my watch chain. One is engraved "From the Manhattan Group of AA" and was given me by Bill when I left New York in 1952; the other is engraved "Honorary Member in Perpetuity of Pittsburgh AA," given me when I left that city in 1962. They mark one of the happiest and most privileged relationships I have ever enjoyed. I watched the first beginnings of AA always with interest, sometimes with misgivings proven false by all that has happened. I thank God for AA and pray daily for all its leaders and members. One of my cherished memories is of one of the girls at St. Louis, who said to me, "Dr. Sam, you may not be an alcoholic, but by God you certainly do talk like one!"

-- Rev. Canon Samuel M. Shoemaker D.D.

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