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More or Less Church

Joanna Depue "DJ/Deacon J" writes original songs and liturgies, does daily Farm office work and records Barbara's eMos on The Geranium Farm. A singer and dog trainer she utilizes healing touch in her private massage practice. PLEASE share YOUR original ideas for worship, special liturgies, prayers, songs, sermons and noteworthy blogs right here.
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Thursday, March 29, 2007

The Twelve Steps and Lent: Step 12

Step 12: Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these Steps, we tried to carry this message to OTHERS, and to practice these principles in all our affairs. (my change from the original word alcoholics)

Notice, please, the specific phrasing used here: HAVING HAD A SPIRITUAL AWAKENING...

Even if you done nothing more than read these twelve steps (not even my commentary/meditation attached) since the 22nd of February,something has moved in your heart of hearts: your soul.

Boiling it down, there is a thread throughout the Steps: you are NOT the center of your life, surrender to your Higher Power is empowering, keeping life more simple by being sincere and simple through acknowledging your failings, embracing repentence, keeping your conscience clear and cleaning up as you go along instead of leaving a mess in your wake.

The last step is about spreading the Good News. You don't NEED to be recovering from the abuse of yourself, of substances or others to testify that there is still help and hope and faith left to be had in this life through your Higher Power... the being (the I AM) I personally call God by many, many names.

You don't NEED to be 'in recovery' to spread the Good News. Not all of us are natural-born evangelists... that being written, if you were baptised, you DID promise (with God's help) several things: that you would pray, that when you sinned would repent and make amends, that you would strive for justice and respect the dignity of EVERY human being and..... would "proclaim by word and example the Good News of God in Christ".

You needn't hit anyone over the head with the 12 Steps. They are a guide, a useful tool in our spiritual growth. If you choose to use them as a guide, your evangelism will be Franciscan - you will preach by your very demeanor, by your actions.

If you are struggling with a form of addiction, there are many 12 Steps groups out there providing a safe community and structure complete with resources to assist you.

Beyond AA© there are daily devotionals and meditations put out by such publishers as Hazelden ( I found a slew of written resources by using Google under Recovery meditations published by Bible or independent publishers (they popped up for me on


Life is one heckofa journey that engenders many different emotions, reactions, twists and turns, highs and lows. We need our Higher Power - and we need each other - to get through it with a sense of joy.

I pray that this (for some of you) introduction to the Steps has been helpful - or on a healthy level, provocative - on this year's Lenten journey. May your Holy Week be enriched and rewarding in very personal way. In Christ's service, Joanna, deacon


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