One of the key concepts of
the Back to Basics Beginners' Meetings is that this is a WE
program. WE attend the Beginners' Meetings
together, WE read the "Big Book" together, WE take
the Steps together, and WE recover together. This is
especially true for the Fourth Step. In the early days, the
Fourth Step inventory was filled out by the Sponsor and the
Old-timers used to say, "Put no block between the newcomer and
Step Twelve." This meant that if newcomers couldn't
read, the sponsors would read the "Big Book" to them, and if
new-comers couldn't write, the sponsors would write the Fourth Step
inventory for them .
Today, some newcomers are being told to write the Fourth Step
inventory on their own. This was not the way it was done in
the early days.
Back to Basics Beginners' Meetings, there is a handout titled,
"Suggested Guidelines for Beginners" Meetings," Under the
heading, "For the Sponsor or Sharing Partner," we find the
"Offer to help the newcomer
with his or her Fourth Step. If necessary, write the inventory
based on what the newcomer tells you. Remember, the newcomer is
still very sick and may not be able to complete the inventory
without your assistance."
For a copy of the entire
Guidelines for Beginners' Meetings," handout, click here.
For a comparison of
some of the Assets and Liabilities Checklists
used by AA's in the 1940's and 1950's, click here