Excerpted from Grapevine July 1955
Our Twelfth Step–carrying the message–is the basic service that the AA Fellowship gives; this is our principal aim and the main reason for our existence. Therefore, AA is more than a set of principles; it is a society of alcoholics in action. We must carry the message, else we ourselves can wither and those who haven’t been given the truth may die.
Hence, an AA service is anything whatever that helps us to reach a fellow sufferer–ranging all the way from the Twelfth Step itself to a ten-cent phone call and a cup of coffee, and to AA’s General Service Office for national and international action. The sum total of all these services is our Third Legacy of Service.