Praise God for leading you out of the darkness of alcoholism.
God bless you for the work you do with AA and the lives you save!
Glory to God for the awesome encouragement and support, the Body of Christ, I have just read in reply to your post.
My knowledge of AA is limited to supporting others. I have a few family members that would claim AA has saved their lives. I know some that claim AA has led them to God. I have been to a couple of open meetings and be there no doubt that God was mentioned, referenced, and held as the foundation to recovery. One of these rooms ended each meeting with the Lords Prayer. However, I also understand that each AA meeting room is independent and self governed. While some are centered on ‘God’ others strongly prefer the term ‘higher power’ and I’m told there are some that truly do not welcome our Lord God Jesus Christ into their program. (Interesting as the AA program is based on Christianity?)
My point being if one does not know from experience, or first hand knowledge, many inaccuracies or inconsistencies could become perception. Perception can become reality. Perhaps this Priest was not being ‘dishonest’ in his vague reply, but simply does not have a true understanding of AA and has formed a perception based on some isolated cases that would not be cohesive to the path of finding Christ? He may have been vague because he has nothing concrete to offer in reply to your question. To be fair AA can become almost a ‘brotherhood’ of sort and that seems to come across in your post. Not saying that is a bad thing necessarily. There are some teachings in the program that could easily be misunderstood such as ‘nothing can stand between you and your sobriety’. Now, you know that does not mean put God second but if you don’t know first hand it could be a concern. I think I remember the idea of ‘you must be selfish’ about your sobriety. That phrase could be very easily misunderstood as a conflict to the teachings of our Lord Christ. Is it possible that the Priest in question was not trying to deceive you per say, but out of ignorance based on misperception, as opposed to ego, jealousy, or anything like that, he was more so trying to lead and protect you? IDK of course, it came to mind, just thought I should throw the possibility out there.
Whatever the case glad to hear your trying that other OC. Why on earth would this make you go elsewhere when as you said the animosity toward AA can be found in Protestant Churches too! If you have chosen Orthodoxy for spiritual reasons, would you recommend someone turn away from that because of worldly circumstances? Just food for thought brother. Keep in mind I’m not even Orthodox.
Peace & Grace!