The endless chatter of bitter anti-A.A. writers:
All of the first three AAs were Christians. Harping on Bill Wilson's mistresses and his royalties is a new tactic of this particular violently anti-A.A. writer--one who seeks to butress his vitriolic assertions by laying them on Dick B. What's more, Lanagan has stooped to writing hosts of the International Christian Recovery Coalition Conferences (which have been held in Mariners Church, in The Crossing Church, His Place Church, Cornerstone Church, Oroville Church of the Nazarene, Auburn Church of the Nazarene, Golden Hills Community Church, and a good many smaller churches in California, Florida, and Hawaii), His technique?
Accuse them of harboring a noted historian in their midst while huge audiences hear and study the Christian origins, history, founding, original Christian Fellowship program, and astonishing successes of early A.A.
I certainly hope his readers DO read the 42 titles, 800 + articles, and many audio presentations by Dick B. which can be found on www.dickb.com, http://www.drbob.info, http://www.freedomranchmaui.org, www.ChristianRecoveryCoalition.com, http://MauiHistorian.Blogspot.com, and a host of other Christian recovery sites.
Further, that his readers begin listening to the many speakers and conferences by Christian leaders and participants in the International Christian Recovery Coalition--leaders and participants who are listed in its website and speak and write frequently. These selfless leaders and participants include many in Scotland, Ireland, England, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Costa Rica, Brazil, Mexico, Sweden, Belgium, Spain, and all 50 of the United States.
I see no evidence that Lanagan even knows the written materials exist, or that the websites and blogs and forums are filled with materials about early A..A., its Christian founders, and its Christian Fellowship. Or that there are so many aligning themselves with the growing Christian Recovery Movement.
If even a fifth of the readers of Lanagan's undocumented nonsense wind up checking the mountains of evidence as to Dr. Bob's youth in St. Johnsbury and Bill Wilson's youth in East Dorset and Manchester, they will undoubtedly wonder what it takes, in Lanagan's strange view, to become a Christian.
Never does Lanagan cite appropriate verses either as to (1) Christianity (i.e. John 3:1-16. Romans 10:9-10, and 1 Corinthians 15:3-5) (2) The thoroughly documented sermons, Sunday school lessons, prayer meetings, YMCA activities, and histories of North Congregational Church of St. Johnsbury (3) The thoroughly investigated and documented histories of East Dorset Congregational Church and Manchester Congregational Church in Vermont. (4) The required Congregational behavior and curricula of St. Johnsbury Academy and Burr and Burton Academy. (4) The four eye witnesses to Bill Wilson's acceptance of Jesus Christ at the altar at Calvary Rescue Mission. (5) The consistent and imperative requirement that all early AAs "make a real surrender" in specifically quoted language where they accepted Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior.
And then are the alleged shortcomings of the founders. Apparently Lanagan has no adequate understanding of the purpose of Jesus's crucifixion, resurrection, ascension, and fulfillment of the promise of the gift of the Holy Spirit. Nor does he appear to have read and digested Romans 8.
I know of few Christians who would claim that perfection of the sinning individual was the result of his accepting Christ. Rather, Jesus came to save sinners and then to enable them to repent, seek forgiveness, and be cleansed--whatever their activities in the flesh might turn out to be--other than worshipping other gods..
We seldom have the time to urge viewers and readers of this word of fire nonsense in order to learn and see for themselves, rather than taking for granted the veracity of the undocumented, erroneous, and intentionally misleading assertions of this writer.
Those who understand the plight of the alcoholic, the addict, and the affected millions will never expect to see a perfect product emerge from Alcoholics Anonymous, Narcotics Anonymous, Celebrate Recovery, Teen Challenge, or Overcomers Outreach. What they will see is a picture of millions of seemingly hopeless, medically incurable, last gasp real suffering alkies, druggies, and affected others. Folks who have found a way out by turning to God, asking for deliverance in the name of Jesus Christ, and continuing to grow in understanding through Bible study, prayer, Quiet Time, devotionals, church, Christian fellowships, and fellowshipping with like-minded believers. Moreover, they will see the hearts of those who endeavor to help others receive the blessing of deliverance that they have received and the lives restored to happiness, usefulness, service, and glorifying our Heavenly Father. There is a point in turning to Jesus Christ for salvation. There is a point in anticipating the return of Jesus Christ. And there is a point in recognizing the mercy and grace of God that have made these pillars of hope possible and purposeful.
Read on readers. Read the Bible, not the critics. Read the history, not the meanderings of frustrated opponents of recovery fellowship. Read the truth and also ask God in the name of Jesus Christ where--in addition to the Bible--it can be found, what action it calls for, and what our Heavenly Father really wants in return for His power and love and forgiveness.
Those of us who have been delivered by the Father from the power of darkness are not only thankful that we are translated into the kingdom of God's dear son, but also that we have a continuing opportunity to love and serve God and love and help others come to Him and be healed, forgiven, and delivered
In His Service, Dick B., Kihei, Maui, Hawaii, February, 2012