What is Celebrate Recovery?

Celebrate Recovery is a Christ Centered ministry where people can find God’s healing and strength to face and move beyond their hurts, habits, or hang ups. This ministry is for anyone struggling with past or current dysfunctions or compulsions, whether they are affecting their own life or the lives of those around them. Celebrate Recovery is not centered on a specific habit or problem, but is rather an umbrella ministry that ministers to people facing a variety of life’s difficulties and struggles.

At Celebrate Recovery you will find a community of people working their way along the road to recovery, sharing their lives, experiences, hopes and fears with one another, and finding God’s grace and forgiveness in solving their problems.

The recovery principles and 12 steps provide a path for Spiritual Growth and freedom from addictive, compulsive, and dysfunctional behaviors. This freedom creates peace, serenity, joy and a stronger relationship with God and with other people.

Celebrate Recovery…

  • Is based on the words of Jesus found in the Sermon on the Mount
  • Is forward looking instead of getting hung up with the past
  • Has a strong emphasis on personal responsibility
  • Founds our primary identity in Jesus Christ as our higher power
  • Places people in the context of a small group where growth and healing can take place
  • Is a place where people grow spiritually experiencing God’s forgiveness and grace

Who would benefit from Celebrate Recovery?

Anyone who:

  • Finds themselves returning to harmful patterns or habits in their lives…
  • Feels like their relationships are not working the way they would like…
  • Finds themselves doing what others want and regretting it later…
  • Feels stuck…
  • Has deep pain inside…
  • Finds that they question their value…
  • Finds it hard to forgive someone…
  • Finds it hard to stand up for themselves…
  • Finds it hard to resist a temptation… whatever it is…

At Celebrate Recovery people will find help dealing with over-working, divorce, abandonment, anxiety, depression, abuse, overeating, lying, perfectionism, grief, fear, drugs or alcohol, co-dependency, sex, overspending, insecurity, anger, guilt, control issues, relational problems, and many other hurts, habits, and hang ups. All of us are wounded.  Recovery takes time. It reaches and transforms the very roots of our being. Jesus knows every wound. When our recovery is centered on Christ, His transforming power can enter into our pain to bring love, forgiveness and peace.

What will the Celebrate Recovery Schedule look like? 

Celebrate Recovery runs every week, year round, working through the 12 steps. Participants are welcome to join in any time, as often as they would like. Our goal is to provide a safe place for people to work their own recovery, not to force people beyond their comfort level. Obviously we get more out of something if we put more into it, but recovery works best when we decide for ourselves that we need it.

Major Ministry Components of Celebrate Recovery

  1. Large group meetings (Wednesday evenings: Dinner at 5:30, CR 6- 8PM). These meetings will include worship, a teaching time or testimony form a CR participant, gender specific open sharing small groups related to the teaching topic, a new comer’s orientation, and an informal community building time called the CR Café, which includes snacks and coffee.
  • Worship: Each CR meeting includes a time of worship. In the worship time there will be prayer and a time to recite the 12 steps as a group. Interested in helping? Let Gary know…
  • Teaching: Following the CR guidelines, the teaching team will cover an aspect of recovery in depth at each meeting (25 lessons and 25 Testimonies throughout the year). These presentations include creative acronyms that help participants remember the material and recovery concepts. For example the 8 steps form the word “RECOVERY” (see below). Interested in helping? Let Gary know…
  • New Comers orientation: At each CR meeting new comers will be invited to a short orientation on the CR ministry.  This orientation will cover the basics of CR and its impact on people’s lives, and build a personal bridge so that people would like to get involved. Interested in helping? Let Gary know…
  • Open Share groups: All small groups in CR are gender specific (step groups included). The job of the small group facilitator is to facilitate discussion, let people share as they feel comfortable (sometimes people will be there for several meetings before they will talk), and enforce the small group guidelines that CR provides. These groups provide a regular check in time for participants. In the groups people hear other people’s stories and find they are not alone in their recovery. The small group guidelines for these groups create a safe place for people to share. It is best to start with 2 groups for men and 2 groups for women (Codependency and chemical dependency.)  Interested in helping? Let Gary know…
  • Café/ Community Building: Recovery works best when people are connected to others in healthy ways. When we are with others we realize we are not alone and we gain hope as we find others have been where we are at. Part of what makes CR work is that it is a community of people traveling down the road of recovery together. The task of leadership is to create a safe community where people can honestly share their lives and experiences, and receive support, and compassion. Interested in helping? Let Gary know… 
  1. Step Groups: Step groups will start after the large group has met for 6 months of CR meetings. This is where real life healing and change takes place. The goal of CR is to get people into Step Groups. Step groups meet weekly to work through the 12 steps in the course of 4 six week sessions. Groups meet whenever the facilitator and group members are available. New groups will start as we gather new people. For those who find themselves in between groups, Accountability partners, and Sponsors will be an option. Interested in helping? Let Gary know…
    Gary ArnTessoni’s contact is garntessoni@gmail.com or call the church office  610-869-2140 

Celebrate Recovery’s Eight Recovery Principles

Realize I’m not God; I admit that I am powerless to control my tendency to do the wrong thing and that my life is unmanageable. (Step 1) “Happy are those who know that they are spiritually poor.”

Earnestly believe that God exists, that I matter to Him and that He has the power to help me recover. (Step 2) “Happy are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.”

Consciously choose to commit all my life and will to Christ’s care and control. (Step 3)|
“Happy are the meek.”

Openly examine and confess my faults to myself, to God, and to someone I trust. (Steps  4 and 5) “Happy are the pure in heart.”

Voluntarily submit to any and all changes God wants to make in my life and humbly ask Him to remove my character defects. (Steps 6 and 7) “Happy are those whose greatest desire is to do what God requires”

Evaluate all my relationships. Offer forgiveness to those who have hurt me and make amends for harm I’ve done to others when possible, except when to do so would harm them or others. (Steps 8 and 9) “Happy are the merciful.”  “Happy are the peacemakers”

Reserve a time with God for self-examination, Bible reading, and prayer in order to know God and His will for my life and to gain the power to follow His will. (Steps 10 and 11)

Yield myself to God to be used to bring this Good News to others, both by my example and my words. (Step 12) “Happy are those who are persecuted because they do what God requires.”

If you would like to see the impact Celebrate Recovery has on people’s lives take a peek at this video of Silent Testimonies: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iWwwt1XWnM8