Friday, September 21, 2012

The All-Important, All-but-forgotten A.A. Personal Stories

Interview of Ken B. by Dick B. on September 20, 2012


By Dick B.

© 2012 Anonymous. All rights reserved



You can hear the Ken B. interview right now


You may hear Dick B. interview Ken B. about Dick B. and Ken B.'s new title, God, His Son Jesus Christ & the Bible in Early A.A.: The Long-Overlooked Personal Stories in the First Edition of Alcoholics Anonymous (Kihei, HI: Paradise Research Publications, Inc., 2012), on the September 21, 2012, episode of the "Christian Recovery Radio with Dick B." show here:


or here:


Episodes of the "Christian Recovery Radio with Dick B." show are archived at:




Part One of Synopsis of Interview – Introducing Ken B.’s Role in our Work and New Book


[Dick B.’s Radio Introduction of the September 21 Interview of Ken B.]


My son Ken B. spoke about our important new book we just published. It is by Dick B. and Ken B., and its title is God, His Son Jesus Christ & the Bible in Early A.A.: The Long-Overlooked Personal Stories in the First Edition of Alcoholics Anonymous, published by Paradise Research Publications, Inc., of Kihei, Hawaii.


Please review Part Two of this Synopsis – which summarizes Ken’s message on the air.


Our new book stems from research my son Ken and I did in preparing an Introduction Dover Publications asked me to write for its recently-published book, Alcoholics Anonymous: The Original 1939 Edition. At Dover’s request, the Introduction featured and focused on the importance of the 29 personal stories in the first edition, 26 of which were not included in the current (fourth) edition.


As Ken and I carefully studied the first edition, we both had our eyes opened to a great dichotomy in that edition. On the one hand, the first section of the first edition featured what Bill Wilson called on page 162 of Alcoholics Anonymous Comes of Age, “the new version of the program” centered on the Twelve Steps. On the other hand, the “Personal Stories” section in the first edition contained testimonials by A.A. pioneers in which they described how they had practiced the original Akron “Christian fellowship” program.


This meant that Bill was talking about a new program of 12 Steps while the pioneers were talking about the program they had practiced—one in which there was no Big Book, and there were no Twelve Steps.


Our new book, God, His Son Jesus Christ & the Bible in Early A.A., covers three major points about the great loss to the recovery movement when 22 of the 29 personal stories in the first edition were not included in the second and following editions of the Big Book, and four more of those stories were not included in the fourth edition.


First, having the first edition stories available again makes it possible for today’s readers to learn what the highly-successful A.A. pioneers really did in the early days. Second, it brings back into view the principles and practices of the “old-school” Akron program that produced the 75% success rate A.A. claimed for the period between June 1935 (when Dr. Bob took his last drink) and April 10, 1939 (when the Big Book was published). Third, it highlights the great role that God, His Son Jesus Christ, and the Bible have played in the whole recovery movement and can play today.


In addition, our new book discusses in detail the strange insertion in the first edition of an alleged statement by Ebby Thacher to Bill that Bill could choose his own conception of God.


Ken holds a B.A. degree from the University of California at Berkeley in Rhetoric. He also holds an M.A. degree in Fundamentals of Oral Communication from San Francisco State University. He has been intensely involved in Bible study, research, and sources since age 17. He has taught classes on the Bible. He has conducted many home Bible fellowships for years. And, he has worked by my side, ever since I got sober in 1986, helping me in my spiritual recovery by sharing with me the power and love of God, and later by teaching Bible classes to the men and women I found in Alcoholics Anonymous who wanted God’s help in their recovery, who believed in God, and who were willing to follow the precepts of “old-school” A.A. in advancing their sobriety and attaining new lives in Christ.


As my interest in A.A. history and the Christian Recovery Movement grew, Ken more and more became my right hand man in providing suggestions, research, editing, corrections, and all aspects of our publishing work in print, on radio, on video, and on the Internet. Ken is married and is also an ordained Christian minister.


Ken has had many years of experience in the computer sales industry and later in the ethanol industry.


He speaks today from long experience helping drunks, along with me, in much the same way that Dr. Bob’s wife Anne, Bob’s friend Henrietta Seiberling, and the couple—T. Henry and Clarace Williams—helped Bill Wilson and particularly Dr. Bob develop the highly-successful, original A.A. program. And now – in Part Two, see a summary of Ken’s interview remarks..

Gloria Deo

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