Back in July, we broke the news that Leah Remini had left Scientology after growing up in the church and becoming one of its most well-known celebrity defenders. We learned that she had begun to grow disaffected after what she saw at Tom Cruise’s 2006 wedding to Katie Holmes, and then decided to leave for good earlier this year. In order to minimize the chances for Scientology’s legendary retaliation, Remini managed to convince her entire family to leave the church with her.
But Remini was still careful to limit what she said publicly about her reasons for leaving. Many Scientologists who ditch the controlling church do so as quietly as possible, hoping to avoid Scientology’s ultimate punishment — to be “declared” a “suppressive person,” Scientology’s version of excommunication. Not only can “SPs” feel the full force of Scientology’s sophisticated revenge apparatus, but SPs also lose all contact with Scientologists who want to remain in good standing with the church. Our sources had told us that Remini hoped to avoid being declared an SP so she could remain in contact with some other celebrities who were on the fence about leaving.
Last week, we received a report that Scientology has now declared the King of Queens actress a suppressive person.
After we heard that report, we confirmed it with a Scientology ethics officer that a declare order had been issued.
“She has a massive PTS condition,” the ethics officer added.
As a “PTS,” or Potential Trouble Source, Leah Remini has been bringing a lot of heat on Scientology leader David Miscavige, particularly in reference to the mysterious whereabouts of his wife, Shelly.
Shelly Miscavige was once a Scientology executive in her own right and was a fixture at major church events and at the organization’s “International Base” near Hemet, California. But since late 2005, Shelly hasn’t been seen at the base or at church events or anywhere else that Scientologists gather. Except for an appearance at her father’s funeral in the summer of 2007 in the presence of a handler, Shelly has been kept out of sight, and Remini could get no straight answers about her location. On Monday, August 5, Remini reported Shelly missing to the Los Angeles Police Department. We learned about that report on Wednesday evening August 7 and reported it the next morning. Later that day, however, the LAPD began telling reporters that Shelly wasn’t “missing,” and that they had talked to her.
Shelly Miscavige still has made no public comments and has not appeared publicly — even at Sunday’s happening in Clearwater, Florida, when David Miscavige presided over the biggest Scientology event in probably a decade, the opening of its new cathedral, the “Super Power Building.” Shelly is still “missing” as far as Scientologists are concerned, even if the LAPD was satisfied that she is in good health. (We reported earlier that for the past seven years it’s most likely that Shelly has been working at a small mountain compound near Lake Arrowhead, cut off from the rest of the church and the rest of the outside world.)
Although some of the press seemed to think the LAPD report had blown up in Leah’s face, it only proved how concerned she was about Shelly and it showed the depth of her resolve in leaving Scientology. Many of our expert sources all told us the same thing — by going to the police, Leah had crossed a line of no return, and Miscavige would be forced to declare her an SP. Leah’s public statements on television since then on programs like The Ellen Show and The View have been somewhat muted, but they only make it plain that she’s out for good, and will continue to put Miscavige in a tough spot.
Now, he apparently has done what our experts expected and has declared her.
We asked Mike Rinder, former top spokesman for the church and someone who worked for many years with Miscavige, for his thoughts on Miscavige declaring Remini.
First, I don’t think he had any choice. Clearly, Leah has dissed Miscavige and the church and dared to publicly complain about the practice of disconnection and even worse, she asked “Where’s Shelly?”
There is a fairly significant effort ongoing at this time to “burn out the cancer” — quite a number of people have recently received their “verbal declares” or a letter from the International Justice Chief attaching the policy letter with their alleged “high crimes” highlighted. I guess it’s an effort to eradicate all “disaffection” because it’s spreading too far and too fast.
It would cause even more dissent (if that’s possible) to not declare Leah, as Miscavige would have another version of the “Tom Cruise” problem. Cruise has not been forced to disconnect from Katie Holmes or Nicole Kidman, and many people who have been forced to disconnect ask the logical question. “Why isn’t Cruise forced to disconnect, when I am forced to do so….”
Captain Miscavige and his ship of fools blunder from iceberg to iceberg. As he tosses more and more overboard to try to stay afloat, he doesn’t seem to notice that there are fewer and fewer on deck saluting him and his dogs.
The one skill he has honed to a fine edge is his ability to make enemies. It’s a self-fulfilling prophecy. He is convinced there are suppressive persons behind every bush, feverishly working to destroy him. And he keeps adding to the army of SP’s so they are everywhere.
More power to Leah. Just like Jason Beghe and Paul Haggis, people like her. She is smart and funny and down-to-earth. It’s probably more damaging to Scientology’s image that she and Paul and Jason have left (“those guys are straight shooters — if they say it sucks, I guess it must really suck”) than even the negative of Tom Cruise’s crazy (“he seems sort of weird, maybe it’s Scientology, but there are a lot of weird actors so maybe its just that….”)
Remini, meanwhile, continues to advance her career after leaving the church. While her run on Dancing With The Stars ended last week, she has begun shooting for her new series — she’s going to play a recurring character on TV Land’s The Exes…
— Leah Remini (@LeahRemini) November 22, 2013
— Leah Remini (@LeahRemini) November 25, 2013
Posted by Tony Ortega on November 25, 2013 at 07:00
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