Opening and Closing Statements
Most LifeRing meetings begin with the reading of an “Opening Statement.” It serves, as the book “How Was Your Week” says, as “the spoken ritual that launches the meeting” It is intended to give, as briefly as possible, information about LifeRing’s approach to recovery and how our meetings are conducted. It gives both a bit of guidance to brand new people who may have no idea what to expect at our meetings, and sets a tone for those who are already familiar with LifeRing.
As Martin Nicolaus wrote in How Was Your Week:
The opening statement is the vocal ritual that signals the formal beginning of the meeting … It informs newcomers and reminds old-timers of the basic philosophy of the group. It alerts new arrivals that they’re in the wrong meeting if they were looking for something with a different approach. It outlines the format and ground rules.
Convenors are free to adapt the opening statement they use or compose their own, and many have done so. Below are some of the variations used by LifeRing Convenors:
Many convenors also use a Closing Statement to mark the end of the meeting, often concluding with a round of applause. Here are some possibilities for closing statements: