HUMAN RIGHTS DAY 2011: CHURCH OF SCIENTOLOGY SPEARHEADING HUMAN RIGHTS EDUCATION

December 28, 2011 at 7:11 pm (Scientology) (, , )

On the 63rd anniversary of the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the Church of Scientology urges mandatory human rights education as the key to its full implementation of the Declaration.

Human rights are the rights that belong to everyone without exception—to people of any color, creed, age, ethnicity or gender. But as United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon pointed out in his Human Rights Day message this year, “…unless we know them, unless we demand they be respected, and unless we defend our rights — and the right of others — to exercise them, they will be just words in a decades-old document.”

To make the rights enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights known to all, the Church of Scientology has undertaken a massive human rights education initiative, reaching more than 180 million people in 2011 with the information on human rights in 17 languages.

The United Nations estimates that 2.45 million people are trafficked each year, nearly a billion live in hunger, and almost half the world’s population subsists on less than $2.50 a day, making it clear any momentum generated this year must continue and that education and insistence on human rights has never been more vital.

In a global demonstration of support for the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and its 30 rights, Scientology Churches and Missions marked Human Rights Day with seminars, rallies, concerts, round tables, forums and festivals, and helped organize more than 80 human rights walks in 26 countries to raise awareness of the Declaration and the need for its full implementation.

In 1969, L. Ron Hubbard wrote, “The United Nations came up with the answer. An absence of human rights stained the hands of governments and threatened their rules. Very few governments have implemented any part of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. These governments have not grasped that their very survival depends utterly upon adopting such reforms and thus giving their peoples a cause, a civilization worth supporting, worth their patriotism.”

For more than four decades, the Church has worked to make the Universal Declaration of Human Rights broadly known. The Declaration appeared in the first edition of Freedom Magazine, the Church’s human rights journal, in 1968. In 1998, in celebration of the 50th anniversary of the Declaration, the Church carried out the first of five annual cross-European marathons, reaching an estimated 33 million with its message in support of human rights.

Ten years ago, the Church began publishing materials that present the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in terms anyone can understand. These booklets, award-winning public service announcements and human rights documentary videos are available free of charge to any individual or group.

“There are many examples in history of what individuals can accomplish by demanding their rights and insisting on the rights of others,” says Rev. Robert Adams, Vice President of the Church of Scientology International. “But a knowledge of these rights comes first. The United Nations adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1948, yet in many ways, despite advances, the violations of its articles are as abhorrent today as they were six decades ago. We work with many dedicated groups, organizations, agencies and government bodies to make human rights a reality. To achieve this goal, education in human rights must be mandatory, and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights must be given the force of law.”

Since Human Rights Day 2010, through direct action and sponsorship of activities and materials, the Church of Scientology has reached hundreds of millions of people with humans rights information, distributing more than 2 million publications and providing educational materials to more than 45,000 human rights organizations and 4,500 educators and educational institutions.

________

The Scientology religion was founded by author and philosopher L. Ron Hubbard. The first Church of Scientology was formed in the United States in 1954 and has grown to more than 9,000 Churches, Missions and affiliated groups and millions of members in 165 countries.

Advertisements

Permalink Leave a Comment

The Scientology Volunteer Ministers Movement—10 Years of Indiscriminate Help

December 28, 2011 at 7:05 pm (Church of Scientology, Volunteer Ministers) (, )

Over the past 10 years the Scientology Volunteer Ministers movement has become the world’s largest independent relief force.

The 800 Scientology Volunteer Ministers who served at Ground Zero in helping New York recover from  the terrorist attacks of 9/11 have inspired the growth of a movement that now spans the globe. In September 2001 there were 6,000 Volunteer Ministers—with more than 200,000 today, it is the largest independent relief force in the world.

In creating the Volunteer Minister movement in 1976, Scientology Founder L. Ron Hubbard wrote: “A Volunteer Minister is a person who helps his fellow man on a volunteer basis by restoring purpose, truth and spiritual values to the lives of others…. He uses the technology of Scientology to change conditions for the better—for himself, his family, his groups, friends, associates and for Mankind.”

In carrying out that mandate, Volunteer Ministers have stacked sandbags along the Danube and rescued flood victims in Mozambique, Thailand and Pakistan. They provided relief to firefighters battling blazes in Australia, California, Greece, Israel and South Africa.  They cleaned up after mudslides in Uganda, hurricanes and tornados in America, typhoons in Indonesia, and cyclones in Australia and Africa.  And they brought relief and calm in the wake of terrorist attacks not only in New York, but also in London, Mumbai, Moscow and Madrid.

Volunteer Ministers from 26 nations flew to India, Sri Lanka, Thailand and Indonesia to help survivors of the December 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami.  Upward of 900 Volunteer Ministers responded to Hurricanes Katrina and Rita in 2005. They flew into Pisco, Peru, after the 2007 earthquake, and delivered supplies and medical relief in Bihar, India, by boat when floods submerged entire villages, in 2008.  And they were the backbone of the reconstruction effort after the 2009 6.3 earthquake in L’Aquila, Italy.

The Volunteer Ministers have been acknowledged for the thousands of lives they saved after the Haiti earthquake of January 2010.  A permanent Volunteer Minister base trains and coordinates the work of hundreds of Volunteer Minister teams that continue to help in displaced persons camps.

In 2011, Volunteer Ministers responded to fires near Haifa, Israel; floods in Australia, Thailand and Pakistan; the earthquake in Christchurch, New Zealand; and tornadoes in Alabama and Missouri.  But it was Japan where the VM activities took on epic proportions this year.

Despite media predicting imminent nuclear cataclysm, Volunteer Ministers began arriving in Northeastern Japan within hours of the 9.0 magnitude earthquake and 40-meter tsunami. Volunteer Ministers helped with search and rescue and providing succor to the survivors and continue providing relief throughout the region today.

Since September 11, 2001, the work of the Volunteer Ministers has truly embodied the vision of L. Ron Hubbard for the program: “A Volunteer Minister does not shut his eyes to the pain, evil and injustice of existence. Rather, he is trained to handle these things and help others achieve relief from them and new personal strength as well.”

_______________________________

Through the last 10 years, Scientology Volunteer Ministers have trained and partnered with more than 1,100 organizations, including the Red Cross, FEMA, National Guard, Salvation Army, Mexico’s International Rescue Brigade, Boy Scouts, and hundreds of local, regional and national groups and organizations, giving freely of their skills, their care and compassion. They have provided physical and spiritual relief at more than 200 disaster sites. 

Today hundreds of thousands of individuals are trained in the skills of a Volunteer Minister across 185 nations. For more information on Scientology Volunteer Ministers, visit www.volunteerministers.org.

Permalink Leave a Comment

Church of Scientology Celebrates the Opening of an Entirely New Church in Inglewood and Community Center in South Los Angeles

December 14, 2011 at 9:20 pm (David Miscavige, L. Ron Hubbard Way, Scientology, Scientology Religion, scientology.org) (, )

I was there, an incredibly cool group and building! Here is the official statement (from the Scientology news site):

5,000 Scientologists, guests and city officials gathered Saturday November 5, for the dedication of an entirely new Church of Scientology and Church of Scientology Community Center. The Church stands in the heart of downtown, at 315 South Market Street, and reflects the growth of a new Scientology congregation amongst these communities. The neighboring Community Center stands just a few minutes away in South Los Angeles, at 8039 South Vermont Avenue. Together this Church and Community Center provide for all Scientology religious services as well as its many humanitarian initiatives and social betterment programs for the benefit of Inglewood and South Los Angeles.

The new Inglewood Church of Scientology on South Market Street houses a Public Information Center presenting the beliefs and practices of the Scientology religion as well as the life and legacy of Scientology Founder L. Ron Hubbard. The Information Center further provides an overview of the many Church-sponsored humanitarian programs. These programs include a worldwide human rights initiative, an equally far-ranging drug education and prevention campaign, global networks of literacy and learning centers and the Scientology Volunteer Minister program now comprising the largest independent relief force on Earth. The Information Center’s multimedia displays include nearly 500 documentary films.

The new Community Center on Vermont Avenue is housed in an historic art deco landmark that dates from the early 1930s and which the Church has meticulously restored. It features a 380-seat event hall, the L. Ron Hubbard Community Auditorium, designed for community events and as a meeting ground for residents of all denominations. In that respect, it is a venue dedicated to community-wide initiatives in the spirit of the Founder’s vision of all church denominations working together to achieve the common dream of all religions. The Center further features numerous classrooms and seminar facilities for a full range of civic programs, including a complete literacy and tutoring center.

Marking the significance of the occasion, Mr. David Miscavige, Chairman of the Board of Religious Technology Center and ecclesiastical leader of the Scientology religion, officiated at the ceremony. In pointing to what this day represents, Mr. Miscavige stated:

“This new Church of Scientology is quite literally imbued with the contributions and global spirit of Scientologists from more than a hundred nations. In that respect, it reflects the greater shape of Scientology—both body and soul. Moreover, it reflects the attributes of greatness all religions traditionally sought to inspire, including decency, nobility, compassion and charity. And that’s also the spirit in which we provide our new Community Center, open for use by one and all, for the benefit of all its residents.”

Welcoming the new Church were Inglewood City Councilmember, Ralph Franklin; Inglewood Chief of Police, Jacqueline Seabrooks; President of NAACP Los Angeles, Leon Jenkins; Executive Director of the gang intervention group 2nd Call, Skipp Townsend; and Rev. Cecil “Chip” Murray, retired head of the First African Methodist Episcopal Church in Los Angeles and now Professor of Religious Studies at USC.

City Councilmember Ralph Franklin welcomed the new Church: “I for one am very excited about your move to your new home. Thank you for being our anchor to Market Street. You are helping revitalize downtown and offering us a platform from which we can make a segue into our greater future. I have faith that your presence will be the catalyst for this city’s renaissance. And so it is with great pleasure that on behalf of all of us here in the City of Inglewood I say congratulations on your new home and welcome to the family.”

Chief of Police Jacqueline Seabrooks spoke of the solutions offered by the Church’s anti-drug initiative: “I have been aware of your Drug-Free World program and know that this program has been supported by various entities here in Inglewood and in the larger environment. I must say that I am impressed by your dedicated initiative to ensure ‘The Truth About Drugs’ message is made available to everyone. Your volunteers are an active force, distributing educational materials and holding drug education seminars. Your colorful, information booklets are popular and effective. Because I have a strong background in education, I admire what you’ve done and what you continue to do to bring the drug abuse issue into the educational arena.”

Los Angeles NAACP President Leon Jenkins recognized the effectiveness of the Church’s human rights programs: “The Church of Scientology is taking an instrumental role in the change we need because what your Church does is address the individual. You know that everybody is different. That’s why your human rights program speaks to every one of us. And one by one you are helping to bring about a just society that can live in harmony together. The Church sets a standard for others in religion and in human rights. I think there are quite some groups that could take a lesson or two from you all. My hat is off to you for that.”

Executive Director of 2nd Call, Skipp Townsend, acknowledged the empowerment that comes from the Church’s programs: “We are grateful that the Church of Scientology is here and provides a stream of resources to the City of Inglewood. Your church is an open door to those individuals who seek betterment in the community. The beauty of it is that the Church has both developed a community and opened the doors to the community. That’s not just development, that’s empowerment. You empower the people. And I am sure the Church will continue the empowerment process by leaving the door open, so they can come in and get the resources and benefits you have to offer.”

Rev. Cecil “Chip” Murray, retired head of the First A.M.E. Church in Los Angeles and now Professor of Religious Studies at USC, expressed highest regard for Scientology Founder L. Ron Hubbard and the Church of Scientology: “My friends, this new Church is an opportunity to make change. I encourage you, the community, to take full advantage. L. Ron Hubbard was a genius of a man who could say, ‘Here’s the problem, here’s the solution, and here are the details of how you achieve that solution.’ Well here is a mansion that has been constructed by L. Ron Hubbard, an architect of the soul and a designer of dreams. Our challenge is to make use of what we have been given. I am so very thankful for what you bring us today. God bless you all.”

_________________

Church of Scientology Ideal Orgs realize the fulfillment of Founder L. Ron Hubbard’s vision for the religion. Ideal Orgs not only provide the ideal facilities to service Scientologists on their spiritual ascent, but they are also designed to serve as a home for the entire community and a meeting ground of cooperative effort to uplift citizens of all denominations.

The Church of Scientology of Inglewood is the third Ideal Org to open in the Greater Los Angeles area since 2010. Other Ideal Churches of Scientology opened in 2011 include:

For a complete list of new Churches of Scientology, visit Scientology.org.

_________________

The Scientology religion was founded by author and philosopher L. Ron Hubbard. The first Church of Scientology was formed in Los Angeles in 1954 and the religion has expanded to more than 9,000 Churches, Missions and affiliated groups, with millions of members in 165 countries.

Permalink Leave a Comment

Next page »