A harbour in a storm

Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) doesn’t work for everybody,
but when it does, it can be transformative.
Members receive tokens to mark periods of sobriety,
from 24 hours to one month to 55 years.

Photo: Todd Tankersley


To us in Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) and Narcotics Anonymous (NA) Central Methodist Mission (CMM) has for long not just been a church, but it is also our trusted landlord and a harbour in a storm. The Sixth Tradition of AA and NA states that we are not allowed to “endorse, finance, or lend the AA or NA name to any related facility or outside enterprise”. This is to ensure that we are not diverted from our primary purpose, which is to carry our message to the alcoholic or addict who still suffers.

Despite this formal Lessor-Lessee arrangement we have with CMM, there is also a much deeper emotional connection. For many years now, the Ubuntu Room upstairs has been a safe harbour in the wild storms of life for many AA and NA members. Every weekday during lunch time, individuals from every walk of life meet upstairs to help each other stay clean and sober. What a wonderful feeling to know that there is one place, in the heart of Cape Town, where we are safe from the turmoil of living life on life’s terms. For people who have struggled to fit in with normal society for most of our lives, it is a refreshing change to always be welcome in the sanctuary of CMM.

I have never entered this building, without being greeted with a warm smile and even a loving hug when I looked as if I needed it. The smell of freshly brewing coffee and the bright tables and chairs of Heaven, make us feel even more at home and contribute significantly to the serenity we so seek and need.

We are truly grateful, to all of you for welcoming us in your midst and in your hearts and making it so much easier to carry our message to the still suffering.

Peace from all of us at AA & NA

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