CER Chair’s Report, December 2020 (Online Assembly)

Dear Fellows,

I welcome you all to this final Assembly of the calendar year 2020. It also marks the beginning of the fiscal year 2021, which began on December 1st

First, I would like to apologise for the confusions as to the duration of this weekend’s Assembly. We had the intention of expanding it over two days to enable us to carry out our annual Group Inventory but realised, late in the game, that we would require the Assembly’s concurrence, by means of a vote, to depart from the limit of five hours in total for an online Assembly. We have reverted, therefore, to the original schedule. We hope to address this issue this by means of a motion today.

Three thoughts came to me in preparing my opening words for today:

  • Unprecedented times may require unprecedented ways of conducting our affairs, as we work through this public health crisis.
  • ‘Most of us have tried to hold onto our old ideas and the result was nil, until we let go absolutely.’
  • ‘Ask God in your morning meditation what you can do each day for the one who is still sick.’

We have a packed agenda over the next five hours which aims to do justice to our primary purpose and those doing service in its pursuit. It is the product of what came out of September’s Assembly and the pertinent issues brought about by keeping the fellowship available, visible, and vibrant, in line with our Traditions. The agenda is prepared, and the priorities set, in our monthly Steering Committee calls to which you are all warmly invited.

Positions are to be filled, by election. A spending plan for 2021 will be proposed. Decisions need to be made. The longest session is dedicated to Intergroup and Group Representatives sharing with us all on our current challenges and how we are progressing ‘on the ground’.

Please bear with me as the responsible time manager. There may be situations in which not everybody gets the opportunity to contribute to discussions, due to time constraints. I am optimistic that we can and will achieve good progress today, if we conduct the meeting within the Spirit of the Twelve Traditions and the Twelve Concepts.

Many thanks to the outgoing trusted servants and to those who have worked so diligently in preparing this Assembly.

Yours in Fellowship,

Patrick – Chair