Should I or shouldn't I?
Why should I pay dues at Fellowship Hall - or why shouldn’t I?
A constant question many of us have asked ourselves over the years. The reasons we have found not to pay dues often come to mind first and the strongest. It is usually some form of resentment against one or more people or policies that do not meet with the high standards with which we now live our lives that keep us from paying dues. Then again is it not the fear of and suppression of these types of resentments that got us here in the first place? Given the opportunity most twelve step members can find numerous reasons not to pay dues. Alcoholics and Addicts have spent years perfecting their ability to pay for only the dire essentials in support of their addictions. Why change now?
For me the essence of the twelve step programs is first and foremost spiritual to and for each individuals understanding and second the absolute need to change my life’s patterns and draw from the strength and experience of others who share my addictions. To change my life I need to open my mind and allow others into my life and life’s experiences.
The existence of Fellowship Hall allows me a place to freely, comfortably, and safely meet with others in my situation. Fellowship Hall only exists through the spiritual strength and financial support of its members. Without this support the doors would soon be closed for lack of assets.
It has been my choice since early on in sobriety to pay my dues annually. During one period of time when I found myself not coming to the Hall for meetings as regularly as in the past I ran across an old timer who frequented the Hall while I was picking up my mail from the Post Office. My annual dues were soon to be due and I asked him for advice as to whether I should pay my dues since I was not utilizing the Hall’s meeting space in recent months. His only response was a question to me of “Was the Hall there when you needed it?” I had to answer “Yes” to myself and I drove to the Hall to pay my next years dues.
Will the Hall be there when the next newcomer needs it or will it continue to be there for the old timers who still need the Fellowship? Maybe not if each of us does not contribute to its existence. Many retort ‘But I pay into the basket every time I go to a meeting isn’t that enough?’ No, the meetings rents alone are not enough income to keep the doors open even if the Hall opened only for meetings.
What should I do now? Do the right thing.
I would be happy to hear from anyone and everyone and their thoughts and ideas of how to convince people that dues really are the basic necessity of keeping the doors open and how to convince the alcoholic and addict that supporting the Hall is actually supporting their own clean and sober existence. Drop your note supporting payment of dues, or not, in the suggestion box by the computer and I will pass on anonymously the results of your thoughts for all to share.
Should I or shouldn’t I pay dues – for me there is only one obvious choice.
PS - Now is a great time to pay your dues or to make a financial contribution to the Hall. Donations may be tax deductible since Fellowship Foundation Incorporated is a registered 501(c)(3) charitable organization, check with your tax expert for your particular circumstances.
THANKS FOR YOUR SUPPORT OF FELLOWSHIP HALL
Rest In Peace Jim...