No Room at the Church
LAST YEAR, Christmas Eve came on Wednesday, the night of our regular AA meeting at a church. Because our meeting room was to be used for scheduled religious services, we were told we could use the choir room. But when a few early arrivals gathered, the pastor told us that the choir room was not available, either. We alcoholics ironically reminded one another of the very first Christmas Eve, when a certain pair were also told there was no room.
In every group, there's one person who seems to hold things together. So I phoned that member, explained our predicament, and said, "Come over to my place."
My place is a fully paneled, furnished garage. I opened the door for three of us. Then the fellow I had called arrived with a thirty-cup coffeepot, full of hot coffee, along with doughnuts, milk, sugar, and paper cups. By the time we were ready to start, there were five of us. Then came Sally and Bob, followed by a father and his daughter, a young woman on leave from the women's reformatory. She led the meeting on Step Three, and told us this was the first meeting that she and her father had attended together.
This meeting had a great deal of meaning for us: Christmas Eve and Step Three, in which we make a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understand Him.
We have been back in the church for our regular meetings, of course, but we will always be grateful for that special gift last Christmas Eve--an old-fashioned AA meeting at "somebody's place."