Which meeting group will be best for a newcomer?
A few meetings are geared specifically to new people (See the New To A.A. page for a list.) There is only one requirement for A.A.: a desire to stop drinking. You don’t have to talk or say anything – unless you want to. All meetings have their own ‘flavor’ (and this will change over time), so you may find one meeting more comfortable than others.
After you read these Q&A’s read New To A.A. if you have not done so already. All AA meetings in Lancaster County are listed here and searchable by day or by city. At the end of each meeting description, letters tell more about the meeting. A legend on each page explains the letters. If the meeting is just for women, you will see W. The O means an Open meeting and anyone can attend, etc. Just pick a meeting and go!
I have never gone to an AA meeting. Where do I sign up?
You do not have to sign up to attend AA meetings. Just pick a meeting and go. When you click on a day to look for a meeting, at the end of each meeting description the letters tell more about the meeting. The O means an Open Meeting and anyone can attend – like students or friends or family who want to learn about AA. Closed Meetings are just for those who want to stay sober. There is only 1 requirement to attend: the desire to stop drinking.
Which is more accurate? Printed or Online meeting information
Because the online information can be updated at any time, it should always be the most accurate. The printed meeting schedules are updated regularly. Should you find a discrepancy between the two, please let us know about the problem. If we don’t know it’s broken, we can’t fix it! Contact us: Webservant or leave a message at the Central Service Office: (717) 394 – 3238.
What is the difference between Open and Closed meetings?
Open Meetings are “open to everyone” including alcoholics, friends, family, students, basically anyone who wants to find out more about Alcoholism and the AA program.
Closed Meetings are for people who admit (to themselves) they have a drinking problem and want to stop drinking. That’s the only requirement to go to closed meetings!
At both types of meetings, the AA chairperson may request that participants confine their discussion to matters about recovery from alcoholism. Whether open or closed, AA group meetings are conducted by AA members, who determine the format of their meetings.
How do I get verification that I have attended any meetings?
No attendance records are kept by A.A. If verification of meeting attendance is needed, the person who is ‘leading’ the meeting will be the one to sign your paperwork at the end of the meeting. If you do not have ‘official paperwork’ but want to keep a record, you can prepare a sheet to be signed with the Meeting Name, Date, Location, Time, and your Name or you can print out this form to use.
If I go to an AA meeting, does that commit me to anything?
No. A.A. does not keep membership files or attendance records. You do not have to reveal anything about yourself. No one will bother you if you don’t want to come back.
What happens at an AA meeting?
An AA meeting may take one of several forms, but at any meeting, you will find alcoholics talking about what drinking did to their lives and personalities, what actions they took to help themselves, and how they are living their lives today.
What advice do you give new members?
In our experience, the people who recover in A.A. are those who:
- Stay away from the first drink
- Attend A.A. meetings regularly
- Seek out the people in A.A. who have successfully stayed sober for some time.
- Try to put into practice the A.A. program of recovery.