International Christian Recovery Coalition

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 July 20, 2011

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Parents with alcoholic teenage kids can choose from the many different types of teen alcohol rehab programs, which include spiritual and faith-based ones.


The Dick B. Christian Recovery Guide
Historical Perspectives and Effective Modern Applications

Third Edition
(March 2010)

Based upon

Dick B.’s lifetime of Bible study, legal scholarship and training, 24 years of continuous sobriety, work with more than 100 sponsees, 20 years of historical research, and 39 published titles.

By Dick B. and Ken B.
© 2009, 2010 Anonymous. All rights reserved

"Glorifying God by making known the roles played by God, His Son Jesus Christ, and the Bible in the astonishing success rates early A.A. claimed (75% overall and 93% documented in Cleveland) among "seemingly-hopeless," "medically-incurable," "last-gasp-case" alcoholics who really tried to follow the original recovery program developed by A.A. cofounders Bill W. and Dr. Bob in Akron, Ohio, beginning in the summer of 1935."

"Glorifying God by helping Christian leaders and workers in the recovery arena substantially enhance their effectiveness in reaching those who still suffer by including accurate information about the original Akron A.A. 'Christian fellowship' program, its principles and techniques, and its historical setting into their recovery efforts."

Prepared for
the International Christian Recovery Coalition

July 2009

(revised in August 2009 and March 2010)

The Dick B. Christian Recovery Guide was a major focus of:

  • Our pre- and post-Conference meetings with Christian leaders and workers as individuals and small groups in Southern California during the week of July 13-19, 2009;

  • Our video taping work with Bob Noonan in a professional television studio on July 16, 2009;

  • A New Way Out Leadership Conference with Dick B.!” on Saturday, July 18, 2009;

  • Individual proposals, and common approaches and projects, of the International Christian Recovery Coalition; and

  • International outreach efforts designed to bring a new, accurate, historical element (with modern applications) to churches, clergy, and recovery pastors; Christian recovery programs and Christian track programs; Christian support groups; Christian recovery efforts in correctional facilities, hospitals, homeless programs, and detoxes; 12 Step and recovery fellowships; VA and military facilities, and other government programs; Christian counselors, therapists, psychologists, psychiatrists, and physicians; sober clubs and sober houses; and archivists, historians, and speakers.

(The 3rd edition of The Dick B. Christian Recovery Guide was substantially revised and expanded in conjunction with the production of the “Introductory Foundations for Christian Recovery” class by Dick B. and Ken B. on four DVD's in March 2010.)

The Dick B. Christian Recovery Guide is intended as a supplementary resource. It does not aim to change the fundamental nature of any existing Christian recovery or approach. Rather, it presents an attractive, appealing, helpful, and effective segmentprimarily historical and introductory in naturethat all can use: (1) to bring to their respective audiences accurate historical information about the roles played by God, His Son Jesus Christ, and the Bible in the astonishing, documented successes of early A.A.; and (2) to enhance substantially the effectiveness of their Christian recovery efforts by employing the successful, relevant techniques and lessons from the original Akron A.A. “Christian fellowship” program in helping those who still suffer with alcoholism, substance abuse, and other self-destructive behavior and life-controlling problems.

Suggested Additions to Christian Recovery Programs Proposed in This Guide

First, a concise, accurate, historical element containing discussions of:

  • Christian treatments that were effective in dealing with alcoholism prior to A.A.'s founding;

  • The Christian training of A.A.’s founders as youngsters in Vermont;

  • The Christian beginnings of A.A. in Akron and New York, including discussions of how the first three AAs got sober;

  • The founding of early A.A., its actual practices, and the "original" Akron “Christian fellowship” program;

  • The astonishing 75% overall success rate early A.A. claimed and Cleveland's documented 93% success rate;

  • Alterations of the original Akron program that made their way into the first edition of Alcoholics Anonymous ("the Big Book") published in April 1939;

  • Ways to enable a newcomer to utilize the early Christian A.A. precepts in the present-day 12 Step programs; and

  •  Means by which Coalition leaders and workers in the recovery arena can adapt and apply this (new) information to their own approaches and still underline the importance of God, His Son Jesus Christ, and the Bible in Christian recovery efforts today.

Second, a "package" of proposed approaches tailored to the needs, ideas, and programs of Christian leaders and workers in the recovery arena, as well as Christians in recovery.

Third, a discussion of present-day approaches that downplay reliance on the power and love of the one true God in favor of (over) emphasizing the 12 Steps and 12 Traditions alone, “higher power” language, pseudo “spirituality,” self-made religion, and actual unbelief; and often criticizing church, religion, reliance on God, and even the mention of Jesus Christ or the Bible by those in today's recovery fellowships.

Table of Contents

Introduction (by Dick B.)

Miraculous Healings Are Recorded in the Bible and Are Still Occurring Today

Effective Christian Work with Alcoholics Before A.A.

The Background Factors from Dr. Bob’s Youth in St. Johnsbury (1879-1898)

The Background Factors from Bill Wilson’s Youth (1895 to 1913) and Later

The Akron Genesis of Alcoholics Anonymous

The New York Origins

The Crucible at the Smith Home in Akron During the Summer of 1935

The Highly-Successful, Original Akron A.A. Program, as Summarized by Frank Amos and Quoted in DR. BOB and the Good Oldtimers

14 Specific Practices Associated with the Original Akron A.A. “Christian Fellowship” Program Bill W. and Dr. Bob Developed

The Verification of Early A.A.'s Astonishing Success Rates

Documenting the Successes of the First 40 Pioneers

Helping the Newcomer with a Full Kit of Spiritual Tools

Some Suggested Tools with Which to Arm the Nestling about to Be Flung out of the Nest

Helping a Christian to Begin Recovery Today

"A New Way Out"

An Emerging Picture of Proposals and Potential Service from the California Meetings with Dick B. and Ken B., July 12-21, 2009

Address by Dick B. at the Association of Christian Alcohol and Drug Counselors (ACADC) Conference in Palm Springs, August 29, 2009


An Important, New Way to Expand Your Christian Recovery Outreach

The Dick B. Christian Recovery Guide also introduces the International Christian Recovery Coalition ( as a means, through common effort, of expanding your Christian efforts in the recovery arena. We suggest, for example, that you and/or your organization enhance your outreach and your service by participating in such proposed Coalition projects as sponsoring:

  • The completion of the "Dr. Bob Core Library" in St. Johnsbury, Vermont;

  • The production of Quiet Time and study group guides;

  • The work of distributing Dick B.'s books and Coalition literature free of charge internationally;

  • The establishment of an International Christian Recovery Coalition resource centerperhaps even a "Samuel M. Shoemaker, Jr., Memorial Center";

  • The placement of the "Dick B. Historical Treasures" in a location open to the public which will enable interested parties to verify for themselves the substantial evidence of the roles of God, Jesus Christ His Son, and the Bible in the early A.A.'s astonishing successes; and

  • The utilization of TV, radio, DVD’s, the Internet, panels, seminars, conferences, and interviews to carry the message of "A New Way Out" both nationally and internationally.

Just as we have been blessed to have the specific sponsorship of Overcomers Outreach, Inc., in the publication of A New Way Out Guidebook by Dick B. and Ken B., and the sponsorship of Celebrate a New Life at Hope by the Sea in our present Conference and promotional flyer, we sincerely believe your participation in these Coalition efforts will advance both the objectives and the worldwide service potential of the International Christian Recovery Coalition leaders, sponsors, and other participants.

The Dick B. Christian Recovery Guide, 3rd ed., by Dick B. and Ken B., (150+ pages in spiral bound, 8 ½” x 11” format) is available for purchase for US$ 35.50 for shipment to the 50 states of the United States ($30.00 plus $5.50 for USPS Priority Mail shipping). The Guide is available for US$ 41.00 for shipment to Canada and Mexico, and for US$ 43.00 for shipment to countries other than the U.S., Canada, and Mexico. (Shipment to countries outside the U.S. is via USPS International Priority Mail.)

To purchase the new, third edition of The Dick B. Christian Recovery Guide (2010) by Dick B. and Ken B., please Click Here to go the center column of the front page of the web site.

For further information, please contact Dick B. by email at or by telephone at 1-808-874-4876 (keeping in mind the time difference between the mainland and Hawaii).

Gloria Deo

International Christian Recovery Coalition
c/o Dick B.
P.O. Box 837
Kihei, Hawaii
Ph/fax: (808) 874-4876


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Trademarks and Disclaimer: ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, A.A., and Big Book are registered trademarks of Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc. Freedom Ranch Maui Incorporated, the International Christian Recovery Coalition, and Dick B., are neither endorsed nor approved by nor associated or affiliated with Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc.

Established July 2009