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From Mrs. Elizabeth Hermanson re twelve-step programs.

In the article "Vatican on New Age" (Janice Glover, June 2003), paragraph seven, she states, "Our mainstream culture is infused with New Age advertising" in which she includes "twelve-step programs."

Due to the author not separating Alcoholics Anonymous, Al-Anon, and Alateen, the original, second, and third twelve-step programs that were started, out of whatever programs she meant, I am compelled to write. I have been around these programs since 1975. I can attest that A.A., Al-Anon, and Alateen work.

At the meetings, other affiliations that you have with your profession/or religion, other philosophies, outside publications, other twelve-step programs are left outside. We are there to share our experience, strength, and hope while telling what it was like, what happened, and what it is like now.

In the Twelve Steps, God is mentioned in six of the Steps either as "God," "Him," or "Power greater than ourselves." In the Twelve traditions, the Fourth states, "Each group should be autonomous except in matters affecting other groups or A.A. as a whole," i.e., a group ought not to do anything which would injure A.A. as a whole, nor affiliate itself with outside interests (such as a specific religion, which would include New Age).

Catholics, including priests, nuns, and laity, have been around the programs as friends or members from the beginning to the present.

I could not allow these twelve-step programs of Alcoholics Anony-mous, Al-Anon, and Alateen to have their reputations dishonoured in case there is anyone in the reading audience who needs help to stop drinking alcohol, or to learn how to live in peace with a drunken spouse, friend, relative, or parent. Millions have been helped.

Athabasca, AB
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Title Annotation:Letters to the Editor
Author:Hermanson, Elizabeth
Publication:Catholic Insight
Article Type:Letter to the Editor
Date:Sep 1, 2003
Previous Article:From Mary Labelle re CWL.
Next Article:From Margaret Harber re Cardinal Carter.

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