6 Unbelievably British Easter Traditions

Residents democratically make their voices heard through the individual houses, the Chapters, the World Council and the Oxford House, Inc. The legacy of Oxford House is forever secure as long as the concept, Traditions and system of operations is assured by control of its members through participation in an effective democratic system of organization. An underlying principle of Oxford House is that each individual member has the ability to be responsible for himself. Living within an Oxford House provides both the opportunity and motivation for all residents to regularly attend AA and/or NA meetings. The example of Oxford House members going to AA or NA meetings on their own is contagious. It has been the experience of Oxford House that participation in AA and NA is extremely high in an environment where one individual can see another individual, with the same disease, reaping great benefits from AA and/or NA participation.

oxford house traditions

Oxford House, Inc. acts as the coordinating body for providing charters for the opening of new Oxford Houses. It also acts as the coordinating body to help individual houses to organize mutually supportive chapters. Through chapters individual houses are able to share their experience, strength and hope with each other to assure compliance with the Oxford House concept and its respected standardized system of operations. The charter of each Oxford House requires that an Oxford House meet certain minimum requirements of Oxford House, Inc. First of all, no Oxford House may permit individuals to remain as members if those individuals are drinking or using drugs.

The Corpus Christi Tortoise Fair

This was the purpose of the first Oxford House established in 1975, and this purpose is served, day by day, house after house, in each of over 2000 houses in the United States today. Children (and adults!) all over the country look forward to their baskets of Easter eggs, which they receive on Easter Sunday. The rabbit lays the eggs and delivers them to the children if they have been good over the Easter period. Adults hide small Easter eggs in the garden, house, or village and the children must follow clues in order to find them.

Some operate for several years and then, because of expiration of a lease, dissatisfaction with the facilities, or simply the finding of a better location, the members of a particular House will move into a new location. In both cases, financial assistance is in the form of a loan having a pay back schedule, not to exceed one year, defined up front. (Since 1989, many new Oxford Houses have taken advantage of state revolving loan programs.

The Oxford House Network: A Self-Run Structure

During early recovery for alcoholism and drug addiction, some members had to leave an institution in order to make room for an alcoholic or drug addict just beginning the recovery process. Other members were asked to leave half-way houses in order to make room for a recovering alcoholic or recovering drug addict who was ready to move into a half-way house. All too often, an abrupt transition from a protected environment to an environment which places considerable glamour on the use of alcohol and drugs causes a return to alcoholic drinking or addictive drug use. During our drinking and drug use years, and even before, many of us found it difficult to accept authority.

Some are able to keep from drinking in spite of the loneliness with which they were faced. The alcoholic or drug addict alone begins to compare himself to those members of Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous who still have family and friends. Loneliness and self-pity soon lead such individuals back to alcoholic drinking or drug use. With Oxford House there is no need for a recovering individual to live in an environment dominated by loneliness.

Self-run, Self-supported Recovery Houses

Where better to start than with the tradition that formally confirms your place as a student of Oxford University. Most other universities ceremoniously mark only the end of your studies, but, Oxford being Oxford, your enrolment at the university is considered equally worthy of pomp and ceremony. After the ceremony, there will be individual and year group photographs taken back at college for you to give to your proud parents, so that they can show off your achievements to their friends. When we stopped drinking, we began to realize that in order to stay stopped, our lives would need to change. Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous provided a framework for us to change physically, mentally, and spiritually. The degree to which we were able to successfully change our lives had a direct relationship to Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous.

  • They also paint their faces black, which some people don’t like very much, as they say it is racist.
  • During our drinking and drug use years, and even before, many of us found it difficult to accept authority.
  • Some operate for several years and then, because of expiration of a lease, dissatisfaction with the facilities, or simply the finding of a better location, the members of a particular House will move into a new location.

The dance troupes are traditionally all-male, but there are now also female groups too. They practice their craft at other times of year too, but their first shows usually take place in spring, when the weather is warming up a bit. Maypole dancing is another Easter time tradition in Britain – and in other parts of the world too.

Resources for Oxford House Members

The members of an Oxford House assume full responsibility for the operation of the House. The rent that is charged the members is determined by the members themselves in a democratic fashion. The rules which govern the house are for the most part also made by those who live in a particular Oxford House Such autonomy what is an oxford house is essential for the Oxford House system to work. By 1988, the number of individual Oxford Houses had become so great that it became difficult to have a meeting at which everyone would get a chance to speak. Some longed for the “old days” when there were fewer houses and the combined group of houses were smaller.

  • Dancers hold on to colourful ribbons which are attached the the top of a large pole and dance in patterns, often to live music played by the village band.
  • Oxford House, Inc., a non-profit corporation, belongs to the residents of Oxford Houses nationwide.
  • The Fellows – all leading academics – are said to process around All Souls’ College carrying flaming torches.
  • In this way, Oxford House, Inc. remains responsive to the needs of the population it serves.
  • Each House represents a remarkably effective and low cost method of preventing relapse.

Many individuals in society are able to abide by the strict letter of any rule, regulation , or law. Alcoholics and drug addicts seem to have a tendency to test and retest the validity of any real, potential, or imagined restriction on their behavior. There is no reason to believe that society as a whole had the responsibility to provide long-term housing within a protected environment for the alcoholic and drug addict. However, there is every reason to believe that recovering alcoholics and drug addicts can do for themselves that which society as a whole has no responsibility to do for them. Oxford House is built on the premise of expanding in order to meet the needs of recovering alcoholics and drug addicts. This principle contrasts sharply with the principle of providing the alcoholic or drug addict with assistance for a limited time period in order to make room for a more recently recovering alcoholic or drug addict.

Many of us soon learned, however, that living alone or living among our old drinking companions made it more difficult to practice the principles necessary for continued sobriety. The wide road out of Oxford that is St Giles closes for two days each September for a “Town” tradition called the St Giles Street Fair. The Fair was established way back in 1200, when the church that still occupies the fork in the road, St Giles, was consecrated. Apparently, Queen Elizabeth I visited St John’s College in 1567 and watched the fair from its windows. One surmises that she wouldn’t have found today’s garish funfair quite so worthy of her attention.

oxford house traditions

A major part of the Oxford House philosophy is that dependency is best overcome through an acceptance of responsibility. In Oxford House, each member equally shares the responsibility for the running of the House and upholding the Oxford House tradition. All aspects of Oxford House operations, from the acquisition of the house to the acceptance or dismissal of members, is carried out under democratic procedures.

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