Welcome to the (_________) meeting of Gangsters Anonymous. Hello my name is (______) and I am a recovering gangster. We'd like to begin this meeting with a moment of silence (15 to 20 secs), followed by the Serenity Prayer.
"God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference."
We'd like to extend a special welcome to all newcomers.
If anyone here is attending their first Gangsters Anonymous meeting, would you care to introduce yourself? First names only, no street names please... Pause...(Let all newcomers state their names.) This is to eliminate dangerous baggage we carry with our street names which are known throughout our neighborhoods before we are. In order to keep an environment of complete recovery, we simply ask that you only use your real first name, or an alias first name. We also ask that you not (piggy back) someone else's message of recovery. Certain terms are bad news here at Gangsters Anonymous. Wanna Be is a term we ask that you not direct toward any member. Please restrain from leveling a member's participation in his form of Gangster thinking. There are no Big, or Little Shots here, there is only one shot, and that shot could be fatal.
Let's be mindful of our new members, and show compassion for their desire to be crime free. Remain focused on oneself. Do we have any visitors from outside the area? If so, can you please introduce yourself, and where you are from? Is there anyone else here attending this particular meeting for the first time?
This is an open meeting. We'd like to welcome any non-gangster visitors, and thank you for your support. We also ask that you respect the primary purpose of this meeting, which is to provide a place where gangsters can share the gift of recovery with one another. If you would like to share, please raise your hand, and as the leader I will recognize you in the order in which the hands were raised. Guests are not permitted to share. l ask that you respect the speaker, and not interrupt, or hold conversations while the person is sharing (Please keep your sharing 3-5 minutes).
Leader: I have asked someone to read;
1. "Who is a gangster?"
2. "The Introduction to G.A."
3. "First to Share"
4 "What is the G.A. program?"
Leader: We will now open the meeting for participation. (Stop sharing at 2:00 pm.) We also ask all newcomers to introduce themselves to the group. We would like you to tell us how old you were when you began living life gangster, where you are with your gangster life today, and what you want for your future.
Leader: Every G.A. group should be fully self supporting, declining outside contributions. While passing the basket, I‘ve asked someone to read. "Why Are We Here". The money collected will be for coffee, new comer chips, and literature. We will send the remaining money to the G. A. Global Services Head Office.
Leader: We will now take a 15 minute break.
2:15pm. Leader: I have asked someone to read; "The Twelve Traditions of Gangsters Anonymous".
Leader: Call for the chip person. Birthdays?
Leader: We will now continue participation. Please keep your sharing 3 to 5 minutes.
2:35pm. Leader: Stops participation
Leader: Call for the GSR report.
Leader: Call for the Treasurer report.
Leader: Call for the Secretary report. Leader reads: Let's take a moment of silence for the gangster who still suffers in and out of these rooms. I‘ve asked someone to lead us out in 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."
My name is ___________ and I am a gangster . Like everyone sitting in this meeting I only have today crime free. If I can keep from thinking like a gangster from this moment until this time tomorrow I will have completed another day free from a gangsters mentality. When we use the term crime free we claim no fighting except in situations where protecting one from unprovoked or unannounced harm , we participate in no batteries, no assaults. We never act like vigilantes, we never welcome terms or titles that are criminal descriptions of criminal groups . We distance ourselves from extortion and extortionists. Eliminating any form of illegal behavior can be difficult for most gangsters but must be done in order to achieve true freedom from criminal actions.
We understand the difficulty of life and income. We know the need for money to provide health and welfare for self and those dependent on us is of real importance. We also know when we practice a gangsters mentality we increase our chances of complete failure. One day at a time we let go and let God. We work the program and let the chips fall where they may. We know that money, property, and prestige will divert us from our primary purpose which is to stay crime free. We are gangsters in recovery we are not the moral authority. If you are here with a court card we welcome you and hope that something is said or heard which will help in continuing to come back.
Gangsters Anonymous ® is a fellowship of men and women who share their struggles, accomplishments and futures with each other that they may solve their common problem and help others to recover from street poison. The only requirement for membership is a desire to stop breaking laws. There are no dues or fees for G.A. membership; we are self-supporting through our own contributions. G.A. is not allied with any sect, denomination, politics, organization or institution; does not wish to engage in any controversy; neither endorses nor opposes any causes. Our primary purpose is to stay away from crime and help others to achieve a law abiding life.
Gangsters Anonymous is a Non-Profit fellowship or society of men and women for whom thinking like gangsters had become a major problem. We are recovering gangsters who meet regularly to help each other stay "Gangster Free" This is a program of complete abstinence from all things criminal. There is only one requirement for membership.. the desire to stop thinking like gangsters. We suggest that you keep an open mind and give yourself a break. Our program is a set of principles written so simply that we can follow them in our daily lives. The most important thing about them is that they work. There are no strings attached to GA. We are not affiliated with any other organizations, we have no dues, no pledges to sign, no promises to make to anyone. We are not connected with any politics , religious or law enforcement groups, and are under no surveillance at any time. Any one may join us, regardless of age, race, sexual identity creed, religion or lack of religion.
We are not interested in what or how much you accomplished as a gangster or what set you were from, what you have done in the past, how much or how little you have, but only in what you want to do about your problem and how we can help. The newcomer is the most important person at any meeting, because we can only keep what we have by giving it away. We have learned from our group experiences that those who keep coming to our meetings regularly stay Gangster Free.
To all newcomers: Gangster term:
Street gang member or gangster means any person who actually and in fact belongs to a gang or a criminal empire, whose goal is to extract finances through criminal means, and any person who knowingly acts in the capacity of an agent for or accessory to, or is legally accountable for, or voluntarily associates himself/herself with a course or pattern of gang related criminal activity, whether in preparatory, executory, or cover up phase of any activity, or who knowingly performs, aids, or abets any such activity.
With the intent to provide the gang With any advantage in, or any control or dominance over any criminal market sector, including but not limited to, the manufacture, delivery, or sale of controlled substances or cannabis; arson or arson-for-hire, traffic in stolen property or stolen credit cards; traffic in prostitution, obscenity, or pornography; or that involves robbery, burglary, theft; or extortion professionally and sexually or having a common name or common identifying sign or symbol, and whose members individually or collectively engage in or have engaged in a pattern of criminal activity.
If you are currently involved in any of these crimes the major police departments can and will identify you as a gangster or gang member. We at Gangsters Anonymous would consider any of these crimes a relapse and would not count our days free from crime. We celebrate continuous days free from crime, after 365 days free from crime we celebrate birthdays. A cake is presented with candles representing each year gangster free. Good Luck!
Before coming to the fellowship of GA., we could not live a manageable life. We could not enjoy life as other people. We had to have something different and we thought we had found it in living life as a gangster. We placed our ideas ahead of the welfare of our families, our wives, husbands, and our children. We had to live life gangster. We did many people great harm, but most of all we harmed ourselves. Through our unwillingness to accept personal responsibilities we actually created our own troubles. We seemed to be incapable of facing life on its own terms.
Most of us realized that this way of life was dangerous and deadly. We were slowly committing suicide, but gangster thinking is such a cunning enemy of good life that we had lost the power to do anything about it. Many of us ended up in jail, crippled or dead. We stunted ourselves financially, emotionally, and spiritually. It didn’t matter what we tried or where we moved to our disease resurfaced or continued to progress until in desperation, we sought help from each other in Gangsters Anonymous. After coming to GA we realized we were sick people. We suffered from a way of thinking from which there was no known cure. It can, however, be arrested at some point, and recovery is then possible.
How we arrived in this lifestyle and way of thinking is of no immediate importance to anyone in G.A. meetings. We are concerned about recovery. If you want what we have to offer and are willing to make an effort to get it, then you are ready to take certain steps. These are the principles that made our recovery possible.
1 . We admitted we were powerless over our gangsters mentality and that our lives had become unmanageable.
2. We came to believe that a power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.
3. We made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood him.
4. We made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.
5. We admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrong.
6. We were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character.
7. We humbly asked him to remove all these defects of character.
8. We made a list of all persons we had harmed and became willing to make amends to them all.
9. We made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.
10. We continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.
11. We sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscience contact With God as we understood him, praying for forgiveness and knowledge of his will for us and the power to carry that out.
12. Having had a spiritual awakening as a result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to gangsters, and to practice these principles in all our affairs.
We become free to live. We want our place of recovery to be a safe place free from outside influences. For the protection of the Fellowship, we insist that no ”Rags", flyers, pamphlets 0r guns be brought to any meeting. We feel very free to express ourselves within the Fellowship because law enforcement agencies are not involved. Our meetings have an atmosphere of empathy. In accordance with the principles of recovery, we try not to judge, stereotype, 0r moralize with each other. We are not recruited and membership does not cost anything. GA. does not provide counseling or social services. Our meetings are a process of identification, hope, and sharing. The heart of GA. beats when two gangsters share their recovery. What we do becomes real for us when we share it. This happens on a larger scale in our regular meetings. A meeting happens when two or more gangsters gather to help each other stay crime free. At the beginning of the meeting, we read the GA. literature that is available to anyone. Some meetings have speakers, topic discussions or both. Closed meetings are for gangsters or those who think they might suffer from a gangster’s mentality. Open meetings welcome anyone wishing to experience our fellowship.
1. Our common welfare should come first; personal recovery depends upon G.A. unity.
2. For our group purpose there is but one ultimate authority-a loving God as He may express Himself in our group conscience. Our leaders are but trusted servants; they do not govern.
3. The only requirement for G.A. membership is a desire to stop breaking the law.
4. Each group should be autonomous except in matters affecting other groups or G.A. as a whole.
5. Each group has but one primary purpose-to carry its message to the gangster who still suffers.
6. An G.A. group ought never endorse, finance, or lend the G.A. name to any related facility or outside enterprise, lest problems of money, property, and prestige divert us from our primary purpose.
7. Every G.A. group ought to be fully self-supporting declining outside contributions.
8. Gangsters Anonymous should remain forever nonprofessional, but our service centers may employ special workers.
9. G. A., as such, ought never be organized; but we may create service boards or committees directly responsible to those they serve.
10. Gangsters Anonymous has no opinion on outside issues; hence the G.A. name ought never be drawn into public controversy.
11. Our public relations policy is based on attraction rather than promotion; we need always maintain personal anonymity at the level of press, radio, and films.
12. Anonymity is the spiritual foundation of all our Traditions, ever reminding us to place principles before personalities.