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|The Lost Lamb -by Del Parson|
|M. Russell Ballard of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints|
A Message on the Subject of Addiction, By a Modern Day Apostle of the Lord Jesus Christ, M. Russell Ballard;
You Will Be Freed (from Addiction)
I now provide you with the means whereby you will be assisted in becoming personally involved with the LDS Addiction Recovery Program if that is something needed by you or persons dear to you:
How to Become Personally Involved in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints Addiction Recovery Program
This is to inform you of some of my involvement as a co-missionary with my wife, Melva and an earlier personal involvement professionally with LDS Family Services and concurrently as a graduate student, in programs that led to its development, and then just before our mission, on an assignment from our LDS Ward Bishop, in the Addiction Recovery Program mentioned above.
From some time in the year 2004, to mid 2006, my wife, Melva, and I served a full-time Couple's Mission in Finland, the country in which I had served as a young missionary. In her younger years, Melva had served a full-time mission in the Eastern States Mission headquartered in New York, N.Y., U.S.A.
Several months before my wife and I received our call to serve a mission in Finland, I was assigned by our ward bishop to assist a male member of our ward in attending Addiction Recovery Group meetings in the Salt Lake Valley which is in our part of Utah. That program was not yet fully functioning when I retired. However, a number of years earlier as a full-time employee of LDS Family Services in the San Francisco Bay Area of Northern California, and at the same time, as a graduate student in the MSW program at San Jose California State University - San Jose, I had the privilege of playing a key role in developing groups that became some of the forerunners of the eventual LDS Family Services Addiction Recovery Groups.
With the Lord's special help I was blessed in being able to retain a good portion my skill with the Finnish language I had acquired as a young missionary. Much of that was accomplished by reading the Book of Mormon in Finnish out loud in our daily scripture reading sessions while my wife, Melva read her portion in English.
Although our mission call was to be a proselyting mission couple, part-way through our mission we were also assigned officially by our Area Leadership located in Frankfurt, Germany to help bring about the Addiction Recovery Program in Finland. At that time that program was not functioning at all in Europe.
I was very effectively assisted in my efforts to accomplish that by closely coordinating my efforts in Finland through long-distance telephoning, with my former colleague, Brent Scharman at the Headquarters of LDS Family Services in Salt Lake City, Utah, U.S.A.
By the end of our two year mission, Addiction Recovery Groups were functioning not only in Finland but also in England. A former colleague of mine with LDS Family Services in the Western U.S.A, Mark Ricks and his wife were serving as full-time missionaries in England, asked us to include them in our first group leader training meeting that we held in Hämeenlina, Finland in about mid-2005, (if I remember correctly.) Then because the Addiction Recovery Services manual had already been published in English (for use in the U.S.A.), they were the first to use the official Addiction Recovery Group manuals in Europe (in various parts of England).
It took a little while to begin providing official Addiction Recovery Groups in Finland because the manual had not yet been fully translated into Finnish. However, when our groups began, the first of all groups in Europe, the group leaders used the English Language version of the Addiction Recovery manuals by personally translating that which was needed from the English language version. The Finns who did that were very capable in working with the English language as well as their own Finnish language. Near the end of our mission several small preliminary addiction recovery groups were functioning in Finland.
It was just several days after Sister Melva Birch and I arrived home from our mission in Finland that we received by mail the officially approved Finnish Translation of the Addiction Recovery Manual. It wasn't long after that translation was approved that three officially approved groups were established within several stakes of the Church in Finland. The numbers of groups in that country has continued to grow I am happy to report!
Now there are a good number of LDS Family Services' Addiction Recovery Groups functioning in a fairly good number of nations throughout Europe, including in Germany and in Scandinavia, as well as those which had begun in England.
Actually, before the Addiction Recovery Groups had been set up in Europe, groups had already been set up in the United States of America and in South America and in even in some other parts of the world as well.
This Blog is not owned by or affiliated with the Church Of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (sometimes called the Mormon or LDS Church). The views expressed herein do not necessarily represent the position of the Church.
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