Trustee Article

Region 6 Trustee Newsletter Article Dec 2017
Hi, my name is Karin and I am a compulsive overeater. This is my last article to write as Region 6 trustee as my term is up at the end of April 2018. I am definitely having mixed feelings about it. I will miss doing this service but it’s time to move on to other things.

Since my last article in June I have been to:
Albuquerque for 2 Board of Trustee meetings – August and November
Albany – Region 6 Assembly in Sept.
Long Island NY, St John’s NL and Ottawa for Service, Traditions and Concepts workshops
Toronto for the Region 6 Convention
It’s been a busy Fall.

At the November Board of Trustee meeting we approved the 2018 budget and approved funding from the Delegate Support Fund for intergroups to attend the 2018 World Service Business Conference. 4 intergroups from Region 6 received funding.

The trustees are the guardians of the steps and traditions. A tall order I think! I believe we all have a responsibility to guard the traditions, to speak up when we see or hear something that is not in harmony with the traditions. Honoring the traditions ensures the survival of the group. They provide the principles that keep the group strong and healthy – which is vital to the growth and life of OA. This is a “we” program. I can’t recover alone so I need the group.
When a meeting registers with the World Service Office to become a group they agree to comply with the definition of an OA group and OA Bylaws, Subpart B. These are determined at the World Service Business Conference which is the group conscience of OA as a whole.
These points shall define an Overeaters Anonymous group:
1) As a group, they meet to practice the Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions of Overeaters Anonymous, guided by the Twelve Concepts of OA Service.
2) All who have the desire to stop eating compulsively are welcome in the group.
3) No member is required to practice any actions in order to remain a member or to have a voice (share at a meeting).
4) As a group they have no affiliation other than Overeaters Anonymous.
5) It has affiliated as an Overeaters Anonymous group by registering with the World Service Office.

Each time I write a Messenger article I focus on a Tradition. Since this is my last article I will write about Traditions 10, 11 and 12. I love the Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions of OA – A Kid’s View, which is a free download on It really keeps things simple.

Tradition 10 – Overeaters Anonymous has no opinion on outside issues; hence, the OA name ought never be drawn into public controversy. The principle is Neutrality. The Kid’s version – Our group takes no side on anything outside OA.
OA has no opinion on diet clubs, treatment centers, nutrition, medical procedures, politics, religion, other 12 Step programs, non-OA literature, etc. We don’t endorse or defend. We stay neutral and focus only on our recovery from compulsive eating based on the OA program. We are free to do whatever we want outside of OA but stick to our primary purpose while in the meetings. Outside issues have no place in OA.
Tradition 11 – Our public relations policy is based on attraction rather than promotion; we need always maintain personal anonymity at the level of press, radio, films, television and other public media of communication. The principle is Anonymity. The Kid’s version – When people see how much better our lives get, they will come to our group. We don’t have to push them or brag.
We are an anonymous fellowship but we are not a secret society, so we need to get the word out that we exist. We publicize OA to the public at large without promoting it by providing factual information so people know what OA is and how to find our meetings. No one person represents OA. There are no stars or VIPs. We keep the focus on OA not the individual members. We respect each other’s membership and keep it private.
Tradition 12 – Anonymity is the spiritual foundation of all these Traditions, ever reminding us to place principles before personalities. The principle is Spirituality. The Kid’s version – We can talk about our feelings and ideas, but not about other people.
We need to respect the anonymity and the confidence of others so it creates a safe place. We do not gossip or judge others. Tradition 12 teaches us to practice humility by remembering we are all equals, one among many and no better or worse than anyone else. No one is placed in a position of distinction, we are all just part of the group. Money, intelligence, and status made no difference in our becoming compulsive overeaters and they make no difference in our chances for recovery. Our recovery comes to us through the principles of the program, not the personalities. It is suggested that we refrain from publishing names of speakers at OA events.
I am incredibly grateful to have had this opportunity to serve as a trustee. I have learned a lot and met some wonderful people along the way. It’s been a pleasure! Thank you!

Karin H. Region 6 Trustee

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