THE RECOVERY GROUP

Meeting Leader Training

Guidelines For Leading Newcomers Meetings


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The Newcomers Meeting is currently scheduled every Sunday 7.00 PM US Eastern Daylight Time. The format of the Newcomers meeting differs from normal meetings, as it provides an introduction for those who are new to online recovery and 12 Step recovery and provides time for questions and answers about the program.


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Meeting Format

The following is the preferred meeting format for Newcomers Meetings. Whilst there are some standard things that should be said, each meeting leader has the flexibility to make the meeting your own and to give it your individual style.

To begin a meeting, the meeting leader should begin by greeting all in the room and making them feel welcome and start with the Serenity Prayer. Here is a suggested way to begin a meeting:

Welcome to the Recovery Group 7.00 PM Newcomers meeting,...
My name is ____ and I am a recovering compulsive overeater,...
and I will be your leader for this meeting....

Let us begin the meeting, with a moment of silence,...
remembering those who still suffer in and out of these rooms,...
followed by the Serenity Prayer...

God...
Grant me the serenity...
to accept the things I cannot change...
the courage to change the things I can ...
and the wisdom to know the difference...
Amen


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Following the opening meditation, you move on to provide an introduction to the Recovery Group Online Meetings, the tools of the program and some basic guidelines of meetings.

The Recovery Group is a fellowship of individuals who through sharing...
our experience, strength, and hope are recovering from compulsive overeating...
We are not a diet club; we follow a 12-step program which is patterned after the Overeaters Anonymous program...
We recognize that we have a threefold illness ~ physical, emotional, and spiritual...
We learn that we must strive for recovery on all three levels if we hope ...
to maintain our weight loss and achieve a more satisfying way of life...

The spiritual principles within the 12 steps and the tools of recovery -- ...

a plan of eating, sponsorship, meetings, telephone & loops...
writing, literature, anonymity, and service -- ...
promote inner change and effect physical, emotional, and spiritual recovery...

The format for the Newcomers meeting is slightly different than that of the regular online meetings...
in that a certain amount of cross-talk is allowed in order to answer newcomers questions...
For those of you who are new to online meetings, following are the procedures we follow at meetings ...

When someone wishes to share, they type a * and wait to be acknowledged ...
When sharing, you type in short phrases and use ... between thoughts to indicate that you are continuing ...
When you have finished sharing, you type Done ...
If you wish to share, please wait until the current speaker has finished sharing and the meeting leader asks for volunteers to share ...

If this is your first, second or third online meeting, please type your first name so that we can welcome you to this meeting...

The meeting leader will then welcome all newcomers in the meeting:
Hello and welcome Jayne.

The meeting leader then introduces the topic and welcomes everyone to start asking questions.

Since this is a Newcomers meeting, you are welcome to ask any questions that you may have about recovery...
The topic for todays meeting is the tools of recovery or any general topics you wish to discuss...

Would someone like to start by either asking a question about recovery or sharing on the tools?...
If you wish to ask a question or share, just type *.
DONE


If you have several attendees who are knowledgeable about the program, when questions are asked you may wish to open the sharing up for volunteers or you may wish to answer the question yourself.

Newcomer: What does abstinence mean? DONE

Meeting Leader: Who would like to share on what abstinence means to you?

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Closing the Meeting

The Newcomers meeting is scheduled to run for one hour and the meeting leader needs to be aware of time. It is recommended that the meeting leader begin to close the meeting 5 minutes before the end of the hour. If there are several newcomers who are still asking questions, the meeting leader is available to stay later and there is not another meeting scheduled straight after your meeting, the meeting leader may choose to ask if the group wish to continue the meeting until all have had a chance to ask their questions. If you decide to extend the meeting, please announce it to the meeting.

To close the meeting, the meeting leader should remind the group about the importance of anonymity, encourage the newcomers to come to other meetings and investigate the website for more information, share a closing meditation and then close by announcing the next scheduled meeting.

The common meditations to end meetings include the Serenity Prayer and the Step prayers. Some leaders adapt phrases from the Big Book into meditations, others share from their heart. When choosing a meditation, be aware that due to OA copyright, we are unable to quote any OA literature in the meeting rooms. Meeting leaders are free to use any quotes from the first 171 pages of the Big Book and some AA literature. However, you are also free to create your own personal closing meditation - don't be limited by the books but share what you feel. Here is an example of closing a meeting.

It is now time to close the meeting...
Remember that the opinions expressed here are those of the individual...
and do not necessarily represent those of the Recovery Group or OA ...
Also, please remember that who you saw here and what was said here...
let it stay here when you leave ...

The Newcomers meeting format is a little different from that of other meetings...
because we allow questions during the meeting instead of before or after the meeting ...
Please keep this in mind as you attend the regular online meetings...

I encourage you to keep coming back to our meetings...
You will find the full weekly schedule of our meetings at http://recovery.hiwaay.net//support/meetings.html...
If you are new to the Recovery Group or to 12 step recovery, I encourage you to join our Newcomers loop at
http://recovery.hiwaay.net//newcomer/newcomer.html...
If you are looking for a sponsor, I encourage you to join our Sponsors loop at
http://recovery.hiwaay.net//special/sponsors.html...
and if you are after some general information about recovery, take the time to have a look at the Recovery Group website at
http://recovery.hiwaay.net

After a moment of meditation, let us end with the Serenity Prayer:

God...
Grant me the serenity...
to accept the things I cannot change...
the courage to change the things I can ...
and the wisdom to know the difference...
Amen

The next meeting is an OA Topic meeting at 9.30 PM US Eastern time...
The next Newcomers meeting is on Sunday at 7.00 PM US Eastern time...
Thank you for sharing in the meeting today...
Please feel free to stay and ask any further questions you may have regarding the program,...
or to just kick up your heels and chat...
Meeting closed.




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