Sunday 4pm - Technical Information

For the Secretary/Chair to read before leading a phone bridge meeting

 

 As the Secretary/Chair for this meeting you will be given a “leader code” that will give you more features on the key pad than other members.

 

          Here is some information that will help before dialing into the meeting once you have been given the leader code.

 

1.    Dial the phone number and then use the regular pin number followed by the # sign that everyone else uses.

2.    There will be a voice prompt after entering the regular pin # that says “IF YOU ARE THE MODERATOR PLEASE PRESS 1.”

3.    Follow the prompt and Press 1. The word “moderator” and “leader” mean the same thing.

4.    The voice prompt will again say “PLEASE ENTER THE MODERATOR PIN (Leader Code) number FOLLOWED BY THE # SIGN”.

5.   You will join the phone meeting muted after entering the leader code and # sign.  Press *1 to unmute yourself and then introduce yourself as the Secretary/Chair of the meeting. Press *0 for a menu of all features.

 

Probably one of the most important services you can give as the Secretary/Chair is to have the highest sound quality on the phone bridge system.  This means without background noise and weak sound quality. “Sound” is all we have for the phone meeting to work.

 

Background noise can be taken as disrespectful or interruptive while members are speaking.  As a trusted servant you can guide the meeting without background noise or interruptions to the best of your ability.

 

Along with your own skills; here are a few tips and a few pieces of information to help you: 

 

1.  Technically the phone bridge system is built for “only” one person to be unmuted at a time.  This of course would include, You (the Secretary/Chair) as well as the Timekeeper to stay muted by using the *1 keys.  The timekeeper only unmutes to say “time”. The Secretary/Chair unmutes a few seconds before the member is done sharing to welcome the next share.  You can remind the timekeeper to please stay muted except to say “time”. (Only one line unmuted at a time).

 

2.    As the Secretary/Chair (with the leader code) you are encouraged to use the *5   to clear the line to address the noise.  This ensures that members will be able to speak so their share can be heard.  Then the member can press the *1 keys to continue sharing without the previous background noise.  We call this “Cycling Through”. (Most of the time people forget to mute and don’t know they are not muted). This can be done by saying “Excuse the interruption, I’m going to clear the line” and then press *5 keys. You then could say, “Whoever was sharing please press *1 and begin again,” or “Whoever would now like to share please press *1 to unmute yourself.” 

 

3.   Some meetings have multiple readers. The extra unmuted lines will cause the reading to be heard by some but not by other members.

Here are some suggestions.

 

1.   Organize the readers so they know the order they will be reading.

2.   Then tell the rest of the readers to mute until a few seconds before it is their turn to read.

3.   After each member reads remind them to mute again.

4.   (AS A Rule of Thumb), just because you can hear does not mean that other members can.  These phones meetings have global coverage. Not all phones have equal sound. Only one line unmuted at a time will keep a clear worldwide phone line for everyone during the meeting.

 

These 4 technical points can promote safety, warmth and recovery similar to face to face meetings. This was written to assist you to know and understand the phone bridge technical features.

 

Phone Etiquette:

a.   Prior to joining the meeting, we ask members to temporarily disable their call waiting by dialing *70 before calling the number to the phone bridge (example *70-1-712-432-8733). If a member does not disable their call waiting, we may hear your conversation or beeping.

b.   When you dial in, you will start the conference being muted.

c.   Stay muted at all times unless you are sharing. You can un-mute by pressing your *1 keys. You will hear a voice saying “you are now un-muted”.  Some phones do not have a long enough beep for the muting and un-muting to happen. You may have to press *1 several times for this function to work. When the voice comes on, you will know that the *1 keys have worked. 

d.   We ask members to use the *1 keys to mute even if they have a mute function on their individual phones. The *1 keys ensures the greatest sound strength for the entire phone line and provides the greatest service to all members of the phone bridge during the meeting.

e. Please do not use a speaker phone for sharing or we will all hear an echo.  Some speaker phones will not mute even when pressing your *1 keys.

f.     To hear a menu of all the features--such as volume control or member count--simply press * by itself.

 

          Thank you for taking the time to read these suggestions. If you need help, just ask.   Congratulations on doing service and beginning the flow that opens our heart to what it already knows---that we all need each other. 

 

Sincerely,

Your Web Coordinator

 

 

The Meeting Format Starts Now

(This is the part you read out loud)

FORMAT:

Sunday 4pm Open Our Hearts, Transforming Our Losses Meeting

 

Would all who care to, please press *1 to un-mute and join together in saying the Serenity Prayer.

 

God grant me the serenity

To accept the things I cannot change,

Courage to change the things I can,

And wisdom to know the difference.

(Al-Anon/Alateen Service Manual pg. 10)

 

Will everyone please now press *1 to re-mute.

 

SUGGESTED AL-ANON WELCOME

 

 Leader reads or asks a volunteer to read Al-Anon's Welcome that can be found on page 8 in How Al-Anon Works, or Al-Anon-Alateen Service Manuel 2006-2009 Page 10, or pages 10-11 in the 20010-2013 Service Manual.

 

          In this particular meeting, we apply Al-Anon tools to the challenging subjects of grief and loss. We learn that “Living with alcoholism can feel like we’re in a constant state of mourning. We may have become so adept at living with loss that we go about our days unaware of its presence . . . In Al-Anon we learn that we didn’t cause the alcoholism in our lives, we can’t control it, and we can’t cure it. If we’re trying to force solutions, we can remember “Easy Does It.”... “Easy Does It” reminds us to be gentle with ourselves. We don’t have to try harder or do better. We have tried long and hard enough. Though we may not be able to change the alcoholic, we discover there is one person we can change—ourselves” (chapter 2, Opening Our Hearts, Transforming Our Losses, 2007, AFG Headquarters, Inc.)

 

READING STEPS/TRADITIONS/CONCEPTS

 

We now need three volunteers to read from Al-Anon’s three legacies, which can be found on the last few pages of Opening Our Hearts (or of the meditation books).  Can I get one person to--?

 

A. read our 12 Steps, beginning with the introductory paragraph;

B. and another to read the 12 Traditions, beginning with intro

C. and a third to read Concepts 4 and 5, beginning with intro

 

THANK YOU TO OUR READERS

  

ANNOUNCEMENTS (AND ANY MEETING BUSINESS)

 

a.   According to the 7th Tradition, Al-Anon is fully self-supporting, declining outside contributions.  We invite you to send contributions to the WSO (our registered WSO ID is 30533066) or make donations at face-to-face meetings. 

 

-Please disable your call waiting before dialing into the meeting and do
not share on a speakerphone or we will all hear an echo. And please stay
muted at all times unless you are sharing.

 

 "DUE TO THE NATURE OF THE PHONE BRIDGE, THERE COULD BE TECHNICAL DIFFICULTIES AND ONE MAY BE INADVERTENTLY DROPPED OFF THE LINE.  PLEASE DISREGARD ANY RECORDED MESSAGES AND CALL BACK IN."

 

-On the 3rd Sunday of each month there will be a business meeting following the close of the formal meeting.

 

 And now, are there any (other) Al-Anon related announcements?

 

         b. Do we have any newcomers today—to Al-Anon or to Al-Anon phone bridge meetings?  We invite you to introduce yourselves so we may greet you. Please press the *1 key to un-mute ___.  Welcome, we’re glad you’re here.

 

          c. We now need a volunteer who is willing to stay on the line after the meeting to greet our newcomers, answer questions about Al-Anon, and/or explain the phone etiquette. Do we have a volunteer?  …Thank you.

 

 INTRODUCTIONS

 

We now go around the globe and introduce ourselves by first name only.  If you wish, please mention from where you are calling.  Please be sure to press *1 to un-mute so that we can hear you. After introducing yourselves, we ask that you re-mute (by pressing *1 again) so that we can hear the names of individual members who are saying hello.  I’ll start:

 

Hi, I’m __; .and I’m calling from __.

  

MEETING FORMAT

 

This meeting focuses on Opening our Hearts, Transforming Our Losses, which shows that “anyone who has been affected by alcoholism has faced loss, and probably many losses.” Each week, we read one or two sections from this book, with our starting and stopping points determined by the chair and organized in large measure by bold faced print and/or clear breaks in the text.

 

 

Can we now get two volunteers for today’s reading?  Thank you.  Our reading today starts on pg. ____, with section ____; and goes through the end of section ____, which ends on pg. _____.  Would the first reader begin and would the other volunteer continue the reading seamlessly? 

 

 

 

After the READING is completed, Secretary thanks the readers

 

SHARES and TIMEKEEPING:

 

Before sharing, we offer a gentle reminder that we speak from our own experience, and ours is derived from living with alcoholism. We ask those who are members of other anonymous programs not to break their anonymity and try to identify with the Al-Anon approach to the family illness. Ours is a different experience and calls for a different interpretation. 

 

We have 3-minute shares. This meeting lasts until 15 minutes after the top of the hour. 5 minutes after the top of the hour, we open up the sharing especially to newcomers and to regular members of the bridge who often don't get to share; however newcomers are welcome to share at any time. We use this format as a way to ensure as much participation as possible.   

 

 

Can we have a volunteer to be our timekeeper?  Thank you.  The timekeeper is asked to stay muted at all times, unless he or she is saying, “time.”  When the timekeeper gently says “time,” speakers are asked acknowledge that they’ve heard and begin to wrap up their shares.  And, now, would our timekeeper like to share first?

 

 

[At 5:05 EST]

 

It is now 5 minutes after the top of the hour: and, in accordance with principles guiding our recovery and, in particular, the 4th concept, which reminds us that participation is the key to harmony, we now invite shares from newcomers and those who do not regularly share on the bridge. (If possible, indicate # of people on bridge.)

 

CLOSING (which begins 15 minutes after the top of the hour).

 

a) We now begin the closing. First, I'd like to thank everyone who did service: our timekeeper, our readers, all those who shared and all who dialed in to listen.

 

b) Now, in the spirit of reminding of us why we are here, I shall read a selection of Al-Anon literature:

 

        "If we willingly surrender ourselves to the spiritual discipline of the Twelve Steps, our lives will be transformed…. Though we may never be perfect, continued spiritual progress will reveal to us our enormous potential . . . Our sight, once clouded and confused, will clear and we will be able to perceive reality and recognize truth . . . We will begin to feel and come to know the vastness of our emotions, but we will not be slaves to them . . .   With dignity we will stand for ourselves, but not against our fellows...

 

          Sometimes slowly or haltingly, occasionally in great bursts of brilliance, those who work the Steps [and observe the Traditions] change and grow toward light, toward health, and toward their Higher Power." (Survival to Recovery, 269-70).

 

 

And now, before saying the suggested closing, I want to invite people to call out names of those whose phone numbers they would like to have.  We’ll ask for those numbers right after the serenity prayer.

 

          C) and now the suggested Al-Anon Closing

 

AL-ANON'S SUGGESTED CLOSING - Leader reads or asks a volunteer to read Al-Anon's closing found on page 396 in How Al-Anon Works or Page 380 in the old version of How Al-Anon Works. 

 

SERENITY PRAYER:

 

And now, would all who care to, please press *1 to un-mute and join together in saying the Serenity Prayer.

 

 

God grant me the serenity

To accept the things I cannot change,

Courage to change the things I can,

And wisdom to know the difference.

(Al-Anon/Alateen Service Manual pg. 10)

 

 

CHAIR STATES:  KEEP COMING BACK, IT WORKS IF YOU WORK IT.

 

Post-meeting details:

 

a) And now phone numbers….

 

 b) The format for this meeting is listed at:

 

The meeting formats and phone bridge information can be accessed on the web at www.phonemeetings.org. Format changes and website related requests can be emailed to phonemeetingsweb@yahoo.com. All other general questions can be sent to phonemeetingsinformation@yahoo.com.

MEETING SCHEDULE 

c) Would anyone like the meeting schedule for the Al-Anon phone bridge? If yes, Chair asks: does anyone want the detailed information on each meeting's format or is the brief schedule the preference? Chair gives brief or detailed schedule:

 

 MEETING SCHEDULE

All Eastern Time Zones on the same phone and pin number as you dialed in for this meeting.   

6am                     7 days a week

8am                     Saturday and Sunday
9am                     Weekdays (Monday thru Friday)

10am                            Saturday

11am                  Sunday
Noon                  Monday ----- Saturday

2pm                     Sunday

4pm                    7 days a week

6pm                     Saturday
8pm                    7 days a week
10pm                   Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday
12 midnight       Thursday

 

Full meeting version with meeting topics can be obtained on the phone meeting by email or on website.

 

Chair passes off to the volunteer (say name) who is able/willing to serve as newcomer greeter. By way of signing off, Chair might wish to say that those wishing to participate in fellowship may stay on the line for least 25 minutes after the hour.