The Southeastern Massachusetts Round-Up (S.E.M.R.U.) is a non-profit organization of LGBTs who join together to organize an annual convention.
S.E.M.R.U. is an AA event with Al-Anon and Ala-Teen participation. We produce a two to four day conference of persons in recovery, who observe the Twelve Steps and Traditions of Alcoholics Anonymous and Al-Anon. We offer workshops, information and social affairs which are intended not only to carry the message of AA and Al-Anon, but also to convey the spirit of joy, friendship, experience, strength and hope among those who share our special interest.
S.E.M.R.U. is a registered group of Alcoholics Anonymous and adheres to the guidelines and principles set forth by the Twelve Steps, Twelve Traditions, Twelve Concepts, the AA Service Manual, and the Guidelines for Conferences, Conventions, and Roundups published by A.A. World Services.
The committee meets at 7:00 p.m. the first Tuesday of every month at the Holiday Inn, 31 Hampshire Street Mansfield, MA 02048 (508) 339-2200. All are welcome… We hope to see you there!
A Brief History of Gay Meetings in A.A.
A Place For Us
In 1949, someone approached Bill Wilson for his suggestions on starting a “special interest group in Boston. Bill responded with, “It doesn’t matter what special interest group as long as you keep in mind that you are there to stay sober”. That group started meeting at the Stag Hotel in Boston in 1949. I don’t need to tell you that the political tide changed with the approach of McCarthyism. The group disbanded. As you might know, everyone jumped back in the closet and also a lot of careers and lives were ended during that period.
The emergence of the next gay A.A. group was the Fell Street Group in San Francisco. They started meeting in 1968. Then AT(Alcoholics Together) was formed in Los Angeles almost two years later. In December, 1971, the Gay Group was formed in Washington, D.C. That group still meets at the original location which is St. James Episcopal Church. The following May, the New Group started meeting in New York.
Gay groups being listed in the World Directory of A.A. meetings is a factor uniting gays in A.A. Listing the gay groups in the World Directory came about during the General Service Assembly in 1974, when all the AT groups were listed in mainstream A.A. for the first time. Before the 12 Steps were developed, A.A. followed the four absolutes. Honesty was one of them. It seems that gay concerns centered around being completely honest with sharing at meetings. They wanted to talk about their lovers in the correct gender and found the straight groups a bit restrictive.
Another reason for the gay groups developing seems to have centered around the idea of being totally accepted by a group. Gay groups brought about the feeling of finally “belonging” or being part of a group.