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Lori Hodgson Defies Scientology’s “Disconnection,” Surprises Her Son in Texas

WoodsFunCenterLori Hodgson and her mother, Dee McMurdie, parked their rental car, walked into Woods Fun Center, and went straight for the counter at the back, where they knew they’d find the parts department of the Austin, Texas motorcycle shop.

At the counter were two employees. Lori walked up to them and said, “Is Jeremy here?”

As soon as she did, she spotted Jeremy Leake — her son — in a side room, eating his lunch.

“He was completely suprised. He was shocked. He looked like he almost choked on his food,” Lori told us last night in a telephone call.

She had tipped us that she was going to make the attempt, but only now could she tell us all of the precautions she took to make sure she wasn’t tracked from San Jose, California, so that her son might be tipped off.

It worked. For the first time since October, 2011, Hodgson laid eyes on her son.

He gave her a hug.

We’ve been following Lori Hodgson’s experiences with “disconnection” for more than two years. After leaving the Church of Scientology, she looked for guidance from former church executive Marty Rathbun at his home in Corpus Christi in April, 2011 (he now lives near San Antonio).

Church operatives from San Jose followed her there. San Jose church member John Allender met up with other Scientology volunteers, they put on odd outfits, and, while Hodgson was inside Rathbun’s house, they approached his door with cameras in their hands and strapped to their foreheads. They were there to intimidate Rathbun about counseling Hodgson, and they began a siege of his house that lasted more than five months. Calling themselves “Squirrel Busters” — in Scientology a “squirrel” is a heretic — it was one of the stranger episodes in American religious history, and eventually received substantial media coverage.


The Squirrel Busters -- that's Allender on the left, who had followed Hodgson to Texas

The Squirrel Busters — that’s Allender on the left, who had followed Hodgson to Texas

Because Hodgson dared to meet with Rathbun, her children and their father “disconnected” from her. In Scientology, when someone — like Rathbun or Hodgson — is excommunicated, they are “declared” a “suppressive person.” All other church members in good standing must completely cut off ties from an “SP” or their own status in the church is threatened. The SP, meanwhile, is instructed to go through various “A to E steps” to get back into the church’s good graces.

Hodgson wasn’t willing to do that. She was done with Scientology for good. So her two children, Jessica and Jeremy Leake, completely cut off ties with her and with her parents.


Lori with Jeremy and Jessica before they disconnected from her.

Lori with Jeremy and Jessica before they disconnected from her.

We’ve written previously about how Lori’s children were under the influence of their father, who tried to keep her from seeing her son when Jeremy was involved in a serious motorcycle accident in October, 2011. Lori managed to get into the hospital to see her son, but that was the last time she had seen him.

Her children moved to Texas and avoided any contact with her. Since then, she has tried to communicate with them through the Internet, but she’s heard nothing from them. Jessica is now 22, and Jeremy 19.

Then, she got a tip that Jeremy was working at Woods Fun Center in Austin, and she decided to take a chance on seeing him.

“I’ve been planning this for about six months,” she says. “I talked to a few people about how to get my plane flight without being tracked. I turned off my GPS on my phone and my iPad. I posted photos at Clear Lake — I was just there Tuesday,” she says, referring to the Northern California lake where her mother has a house. “They knew something was up, because they called my mom’s house at the lake and hung up. And they called three times in the morning.”

Lori and Dee left San Jose at six thirty Wednesday morning, and arrived in Austin at 11:30. “We didn’t get a rental car ahead of time. We couldn’t take the chance,” she says.

The precautions weren’t frivolous. Scientology’s intelligence bureau — the Office of Special Affairs (OSA) — has a long history of tracking people by flight reservations, GPS devices, and credit card use. For whatever reason, the church has considered Jeremy and Jessica Leake enough of a priority that Hodgson has had plenty of interaction with OSA in the last two years. (The “Squirrel Busters” more than made that plain.)

“So we got our car. And then we went to the Austin police to check in,” she says, referring to her previous experience in Corpus Christi. “I told them I wanted to see my son and let him know that I’m doing well, because he’s been told I’ve had a mental breakdown,” she says.

After talking with the police about why they were there, Lori and Dee drove directly to Woods Fun Center, about a 20-minute drive.

“I knew where the parts department was. I walked in, took a big breath and went to the back,” she says. That’s when she found him eating his lunch.

“He smiled. He seemed happy to see me. He gave me a big hug. He gave my mom a hug,” she remembers, and this is how she describes their exchange:

“What are you doing here?”

“We came here to see you.”

“You came here to see me?”

“Yeah, I took off six days so I could come out here and see you.”


Lori says they asked him how he was doing, and he said he was doing well.

“I told him ‘I miss you. I love you.’ He said ‘I miss you too, mom. I love you.'”

She joked with him that she’d brought a shopping list. (Like her son, she’s a motorcycle rider.)

“I tried not to bring up Scientology at all. I told him my mom has a place at the lake and that he’s welcome to come. And I told him that we’re going to Hawaii in September and he was welcome to come,” she says, and he seemed pleased to hear about the lake.

Then, Lori says, her mother excused herself and left them alone.

She knew it was the time to be a little more direct.

“Jeremy, I just want to be your mom, I just want to be your friend,” she told him.

“You know what to do to fix that,” he replied, referring to the “A to E steps” that she would be required to follow.

She tells us that there’s no way she’ll go back to the church to go through its process of getting back in good graces. “What happens is you go in, you rat on all your friends, you get crazy counseling, and say you lied about everything. I can’t do that,” she tells us.

“Jeremy, I can’t go back to the church,” she told her son. “To do that I would have to do the steps and I’d have to say I lied. And I didn’t lie. I can’t do that,” she said.

“Mom, I don’t want to talk about that here,” he responded.

“Jeremy, I’d have to do their counseling, and I don’t want to do that. I don’t care if you can’t move back to California. I just want to be able to visit and be friends.”

“You know what to do to fix it.”

“I can’t do that. There has to be another way. Let’s get your dad and let’s talk about this.”

“You’d meet with my dad?”

“Yes, I’ll meet with your dad,” she told him, and she gave him the number on the throwaway phone she’d purchased for the trip.

“There has to be a way, besides me going back in the church, for us to be together,” she told him. “Don’t you think there’s a way we could be together?”

She says that he responded with a noncommittal “maybe.”

He rang up her purchase — some shirts and socks — and they talked about her dogs, and her tattoo, which he said he liked.

“He could see I wasn’t crazy. That I’m happy. But that I miss him and Jessica,” she says. “And he never tried to text his father, which he usually does. It went so much better than I thought it would. I spent 45 minutes with him.”

She told him that she was staying in Austin for six days, and asked if he wanted to have dinner, telling him to bring along his girlfriend — who she hasn’t met — as well as his sister and her boyfriend.

“I hope he does meet with me. And brings OSA. My mom and I don’t care, we’ll meet them all,” she says. “He looks great. He’s taller than me now. But he looks sad. There’s a sadness in his eyes.”

Her mother, Dee, tells us she was amazed to see it go so well.

“This was a really big event to pull off, and for them not to know. As I watched the love between son and mother, I could tell Jeremy is very sad and misses his family,” she says.

“They’ve told him so many lies about Lori. It was great to watch her be herself with him. She looked so wonderful. And she’s such an athlete. A motorcycle mama. People were saying, this is your mom?” McMurdie says with a laugh. “He knows they’ve lied to him about her mental state. And he gave me three hugs. And one he grabbed me and really hugged me.”

We asked her if she was concerned that the visit might make things difficult for her grandson with Scientology.

“I don’t want him to get in trouble for that because they’re so nutty. The shit may hit the fan, but bring it on. Lori’s wish was to see her son. And that was her Mother’s Day wish. And her Mother’s Day is going to be fine.”

On Mother’s Day, Lori and Dee will still be in Austin.


Lori Hodgson and Dee McMurdie, in Austin after seeing Jeremy

Lori Hodgson and Dee McMurdie, in Austin after seeing Jeremy

“He knows where I’m at. He has my number. He can see me if he wants to. I’m going to be here six days. I’m going to enjoy Austin,” Lori says.

“It was my Mother’s Day wish to see my son, and I did it.”


Posted by Tony Ortega on May 9, 2013 at 07:00

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  • FistOfXenu

    I applaud you Lori. And your mom for having your back. And I hope the megadose of Vitamin Mom will open Jeremy’s eyes so he realizes the lying liars lied to him about his mom so what else did they lie about, and what else again, til he looks around and finds the door OUT of the cult.

    • I hope so too but I’m concerned that his response (“You know what to do”) indicates that he’s still not thinking independently and is still susceptible to drinking the Kool-aide.

      • villagedianne

        Even though her son said what he was required by COS to say, Lori might have gotten through to him on another level.

      • FistOfXenu

        I agree that’s possible. He’ll be like that a long time. But he also seemed impressed that she made the effort to see him. And that she’d agree to talk to his dad. His head’s gonna be in a storm after that. And now he knows for himself that the cult lied to him. He saw with his own eyes his mom didn’t flip out.

        • There are positive indications and we know that the first step is the most significant one in a journey. I’m just being cautious.

          • FistOfXenu

            Caution’s good. Some times I feel like we’re too ready to celebrate this slow motion crash of the cult. We need to wait until we can dance on the corpse of the cult to be sure. But still, if you’ve ever seen a $cieno that you grew up with go into their flipped-out demented routine because you’re an SP and you dared to talk to them you know there’s some real hope here for Lori. I guess we’re gonna have to stay stuck in the middle for a little while longer.

            • Glad to hear your input re Jeremy’s response. I haven’t had the pleasure (to my knowledge) of actually meeting a member of the cult of Ron. My opposition came from the outrage I felt when confronted by the group’s actions in the articles in the St. Petersburg Times followed by viewing videos on Mark Bunker’s site and Tory Magoo’s You Tube page. And of course, Tony’s excellent coverage accelerated my learning curve exponentially.

  • FLUNK_101

    “He gave her a hug.”
    Awww …
    I’m glad Lori got to see her son. Love found a way.

  • EnthralledObserver

    Well done, Lori… You got to see him and hug him. It is baby steps to the world, but I’m sure it meant a whole lot more to you, especially so close to Mother’s Day. I do hope you get to see a whole lot more of him (and Jessica) soon.

  • Observer

    omg, Lori!! You’ve got some guts! I practically burst into tears when I read this. Praying that this small dose of reality and TRUTH will lead to questioning and clarity and escape … and an appreciation of just how lucky he is that Lori is his mother. Run, Jeremy, run!

    I would also like to point out that the allegedly IQ-enhanced and at-cause OSA operatives were outsmarted and outmaneuvered by a lowly degraded SP and her mom. You might want to think twice about robbing mothers of their children, Davey. One day you’re going to mess with the wrong one and you’ll find yourself crapping out your own teeth.

    I’m sure that somewhere on the planet is an organization that is more harmful, mendacious and outright despicable than The Most Ethical People On the Planet, not counting governments, but I can’t think of one.

    • SciWatcher

      N.O.I perhaps?

      • Observer

        Good choice, but do they force disconnection?

    • Sherbet

      NAMBLA. Pretty despicable in my book.

      • Observer

        Ugh. Human depravity truly knows no bounds. It doesn’t matter how many worse organizations there are than Scientology though; their existence doesn’t redeem Scientology in the slightest.

        • Sherbet

          I agree, Observer and ‘knickers.

          • monkeyknickers

            But since they are so blatant . . . can they not prosecute these assholes? I mean, I don’t know the answer . . . . I’m just so mystified to be in a world where I recognize what “NAMBLA” even is.

            • Sherbet

              My obsession with the cult of scn is depressing enough. I can’t even begin to give any thought to NAMBLA, or even the Westboro Baptist Church. All crazy people hurting other people in a variety of ways.

      • monkeyknickers

        I don’t even GET how those guys are allowed to continue living.

      • Sherbet, an unlikely challenger to NAMBLA has just appeared – Barbara Hewson, a prominent British barrister has called for an halt to the persecution of elderly men for ‘misdemeanors’ like touching a 17-year-old’s breast, kissing a 13-year-old, or putting one’s hand up a 16-year-old’s skirt.

        Lowering the age of consent to 13 would, in her opinion, solve the problem and young people would no longer be able to ruin the lives of rich and powerful men!

        ‘Age of consent should be 13, says barrister’


        • Sherbet

          Good God, Andrew! She needs her head examined.

          • Poison Ivy

            Disgusting. Possibly this is a woman who herself was molested as a young teen and is trying to deal with the PTSD by pretending the trusted male who did it to her was doing nothing wrong…

    • Captain Howdy

      Los Zetas Cartel.

      • Missionary Kid

        Now that’s REAL disconnection.

    • monkeyknickers

      Me too OBs. I had a turkey dog halfway to my mouth (the fetuses have commanded we eat turkey dogs, pickled onions and a gallon of mustard for every meal) and I started crying. The poor boy was obviously SO thrilled to see his mama, and has to fall back on this Utter. Bullshit. Her heart must be bursting.

      In other news, Lori is super pretty. Like, really healthy looking. Or something. I should’ve considered better adjectives before I started writing this. 🙂

      • BuryTheNuts2

        What did I miss?

        • Sherbet

          I, too, was wondering, Bury. What’s up with that monkey?

          • BuryTheNuts2

            I guess the turkey dogs and gallon of mustard are a pretty big clue eh?

            • monkeyknickers

              And pickles. And . . . .strangely . . . dirt. I want to eat dirt. I know that sounds crazy. I would look it up on the interwebs ‘cept I’m too freaked out to discover I’m a lunatic or something. All I can say is that I was planting flowers yesterday, and I wanted to lick my fingers. God I’m weird?

            • BuryTheNuts2

              No…Dirt is not crazy. My sister is a dirt eater. And she doesn’t even have to be pregnant.
              She prefers her dirt from New Mexico or Utah.
              She hates Nevada dirt.
              (Thank goodness that is where she lives now!)

            • monkeyknickers

              Well . . . . I didn’t want eat dirt BEFORE now. But currently those harpies colonizing my nethers seem to think it’s a fantastic meal option. 🙂

            • Sherbet

              That’s called, I believe,”pica.” Look it up. It’s very common. With some women it’s chalk.

            • monkeyknickers

              No shit? I’m looking it up right now. Pica. It sounds like a skin condition.

            • sugarplumfairy

              Tell your doctor; craving dirt is more common in pregnant women.. Cornell did a study a couple years back.. They think it stems back to the days when bacteria in the earth may hve helped kill pathogens in the digestive tract.. but I’m pretty sure they’re still recommending you don’t act on the craving..

            • monkeyknickers

              Hmm – that is so interesting SP . . . thanks for the heads up.

              Undoubtedly I have pathogens and parasites. Two of them. Who will eventually be needing college educations.

            • monkeyknickers

              BTN – I keep forgetting to ask, but did you grow up in the cult?

          • monkeyknickers


        • Captain Howdy

          Fetuses prefer turkey wieners to anthony wieners poking them in the eye causing engrams.

          • FLUNK_101


          • monkeyknickers

            Hmmmmmmmmm . . . . I should pull a graph together on the subject. Maybe it’ll raise my stats!

          • Observer

            That is just icky on so many levels.

        • Your parents should have explained it to you when you were younger. I am not sure this is the appropriate place.

          • BuryTheNuts2

            Since when? lol

        • monkeyknickers

          Ha! I guess I didn’t think about that. Yes, 2 fetuses. Fraternal female twins.

          Don’t have any grandiose ideas about a husband or partner or financially contributing entity tho, BTN. It’s a wasteland in that department. 🙂 I mean – I’m a musician. I have a certain responsibility to keep up the general rep. 🙂 Sex, drugs, and . . . . . TWINS? Huh? SO not rock ‘n’ roll. What I wouldn’t have done to have an XY chromosome. 🙂

          So yeah – they are in there, plotting my demise. Constantly demanding pickled onions and tomato sauce. And then capriciously sending everything back up the pipe when displeased. Bitches.

          And Linda’s (my sister) daughter is running around the house right now demanding I play “single ladies” again and do the dance. I have no other choice. 🙂

          Okay look – I kinda like it. So sue me. 🙂

          • ParticleMom

            Congratulations! I always wanted twins 🙂 How exciting!

            Have you seen this video? It cracks me up every time!


            • monkeyknickers

              Oh my god. I almost coughed up a lung laughing.

              Thanks for the congrats too PM. I am definitely looking forward to holding my two little girls.

              I’m not so sure I woulda picked to start my baby-making career as a single mother having twins tho . . . 🙂

            • Maybe you could space them out a bit as this woman did!

              ‘Twins born 87 days apart’



            • monkeyknickers

              THAT WAS NUTS.


              Going into labor twice . . . and horribly anxious about your daughter in the ICU. Maybe whoever invented twins shoulda thought ahead a little bit, hmmmm?

      • aquaclara

        Bestest congratulations on the twins to be!! Did you know Lawrence Wright also wrote an excellent book about twins? It’s called “Twins and what they tell us about who we are”… of course, you may not get to reading it until the girls leave for college, but we can always put it on the Bunker book list and give you excerpts! I have a set of grandbabies who are fraternal twins and utterly adorable.
        You have given yourself a very nice Mother’s Day present indeed!

        • monkeyknickers

          What good news! I’ll totally search that book out! Thanks so much aquaclara!

          I’m very much counting on Ruby and Delphine being adorable. So I can get ’em in a commercial or something and they can start paying the damn bills around here. 🙂

          I’m excited too . . . but I’m also pretty freaked out about managing two infants and a three year old (my niece) by myself. From everything I’ve read it seems that, for the first 3 months, I will be a milk machine and walk around with two aliens constantly attached to my chest. Tho EVIDENTLY, drinking Guiness help milk production. SWEET.

  • I’ve followed Lori’s story for some time and it’s filled me with both sadness at the estrangement and anger at the manipulative power of an evil cult to force families apart.

    But I think the persistence and inextinguishable love that both Lori and Dee have shown towards Jeremy and Jessica will eventually be rewarded and the clutches of Scientology’s spiteful disconnection policy torn asunder.

    Lori and Dee, two super people who should properly be referred to as ‘Super Mom’ and ‘Super Grand Mom’!


  • Truthiwant

    Scientology’s policy of disconnection is pure evil. It has no religious or spiritual significance
    whatsoever. That an individual can choose not to talk to somebody, like the
    Cloistered Nuns of Saint Clare in Assisi, is a personal choice. But to be told to disconnect from
    your loved ones, by a so called ‘Church’, is criminal.

    • Another difference is that cloistered nuns are permitted contact with their families. While they have chosen a life of prayer, meditation and solitude this does not include disconnection.

      • Disconnection is more like excommunication was back when the Church really had totalitarian power.

  • Vistaril

    “‘I miss you too, mom. I love you.’”

    ^^^ Totally worth crossing the Rubicon and taking OSA on. Nice one, Lori. Risking Scientology’s wrath to deliver any son an opportunity to say that to his mother delivers him a gift no amount of auditing can ever match. You rock. Stay strong.

  • CoolHand

    Lori, soooo happy you got to see your son! Tears this morning, both of joy for your reunion and sadness for the situation. I hope you see your daughter as well and you have a wonderful Mother’s Day weekend. This will work out in the end.

    A message to the Scientology dicks who keep trying to mess with people’s families – you will not win when it comes to a parent and child. Love is so much stronger than hate, so all you’ll be left with eventually is your stupid little policies and nobody to enforce them on, so fuck off.

    • BuryTheNuts2

      Thank you Lucas!
      I second your “fuck off” and raise you a DMSCOHB!

      • monkeyknickers


      • FistOfXenu

        I’ll see your DMSCOHB and raise you a “DM meet your new room mate Bubba. Bubba, he’s all yours”

      • Missionary Kid

        His majestic wogness (me) wants to know what DMSCOHB stands for.
        Hopefully, it’s something joking and degrading Co$.

  • MO Mom

    Lori’s story has broken my heart in the past, because I am so close to my amazing daughter, and it hurt me to see the pain Lori was in because of this HORRID disconnection. Today, y’all made me cry again. Lori, just remember that a mother’s love can conquer all.

  • sugarplumfairy

    Lori and Dee look so happy.. for what is essentially crumbs.. f*cking scientology..

  • BuryTheNuts2

    Oh my god this is so amazing! I am so happy for Lori and it gives me hope to know that Jeremy loves his mom despite all of the hideous lies he has been fed.
    Oh I so hope that he contacts her again while she is there….if “they” let him.
    Good for her for planning and carrying this off.
    Maybe it will sow seeds of doubt now that he KNOWS he has been lied to.
    Oh please, please let this be an open door.

  • AnonymousSP

    Happy Mother’s Day little Davey. Hope lots of moms and their children are reconnecting everywhere.

  • sharon brown

    So Happy for you and your Mom, Lori! I pray that your going through all the precautions to be able to see Jeremy is the first step in opening his eyes to the lie that Is $cientology! And as Observer said, ” run Jeremy, Run ! You have an Awesome Mom that Loves you, while CO$ doesn’t give a Shit , except to be ” in control”. I bet you do have a little dick Davey , which causes your Need to attempt to Overcompensate !

  • TheHoleDoesNotExist

    Dear David: There just may be a whole flock of lawyers and cameras watching what you do next. That is all, asshat.

    • FistOfXenu

      Dear Davey. You’re already being watched. See those knots in your wood paneling? They aren’t knots. They’re eyes. See the eyelets in your shoes and your belt? More eyes. More watching. See the people on your TV? They really can see you. And they never forget. Or forgive.

      • FistOfXenu

        By the way, one of them just told me you need to change the upholstery on that couch. You know which one. That stain will never come out.

      • Observer

        Not a shoop …

        • BuryTheNuts2

          That is freaking hilarious O!

        • Truthiwant

          Oh my God!

          You have The Holy Shroud Of Xenu!!

          Is it original or a medieval fake?

          • FistOfXenu

            Take a good look. it’s real. Comes from a tree I leaned against a long time ago. I do that a lot. It restimulates engrams in Teegeeackians so they’ll remember their past. It’s a promise I’m still looking after them.

            Not for you Davey. For you it’s a promise that you’re being watched. Studied. Millions of thetans all over the world in the grain of wood. They see what you do. They don’t forget. Or forgive. And when the time comes they’ll tell everybody what you’ve been doing.
            Tick tock, DM.

            • Truthiwant

              Awesome. I should KNOT have doubted you!

            • Poison Ivy

              Well, but if it’s BURLWOOD….

            • FistOfXenu

              That’s like trooper’s sunglasses with the mirrors so you don’t see their eyes. I’m still watching.

        • FistOfXenu

          Did you want me to autograph that for you, Obs? 🙂

          • Observer

            Alas, it’s not mine. If it were I’d make it the focal point of the room.

        • monkeyknickers

          Awe. Fucking. Some.

      • MO Mom

        OMG. When I was really young, the shape of the wood grain at my grandparents house would scare me whenever it went to bed- looked like that , but meaner. Shudder.

    • sketto

      To quote the great philosopher Charlie Sheen…

      Lori Hodgson – Winning!

      David Miscavige – Sucking!*


  • BuryTheNuts2

    So much for OT abilities!



  • I’m so happy for Lori, but sad at the same time for all the mothers who don’t have the resources she did to contact their disconnected children. Plane tickets to Texas, disposable phone, 6 days off work, a week of accommodations and rental car expenses, as well as invitations to dinner, Hawaii and a lakefront home. In addition, Lori looks like a fun person to be around. May the healing continue in their family and all the disconnected families.

  • Truthiwant

    Quote from Tony’s article –

    “It was one of the stranger episodes in American religious history.”

    Some important moments in American religious history –

    1620, The Pilgrim Fathers arrive in America

    1656, The first Quakers arrive in Boston

    1730, The first Synagogue in America founded in New York City

    1939, The Roman Catholic Church beatifies the first Native American


    2011, The Squirrel Busters siege Marty Rathbun’s house!!

    • You missed an angel giving golden plates to Joseph Smith, the Shakers discovering that sex is bad even if it IS for procreation, Mary Baker Eddy declaring that you can pray away anything, the Adventists figuring out exactly on what day in 1846 the world would end and continuing to predict the world’s end when nothing happened, the Fox sisters faking encounters with the spirits of the dead and the Spiritualists continuing to hold seances even after they were told it was all a prank, Aimee Semple Macpherson of the pentecostals inventing broadcast evangelism then vanishing into the desert and telling all kinds of conflicting stories about what she was doing… There have been so many strange episodes in American religious history that it was rather a high bar.

      • Truthiwant

        And of course, the most important of all in 1950. You know what!! Also called A.D.1

        • Poison Ivy

          “If you really want to make millions, start a religion!” Well, can’t say L Ron NEVER told the truth.

    • Poison Ivy


  • jensting

    Only a cult requires members to sacrifice family ties to stay in the good graces of teh organisation. Glad for Lori that she got the meeting pulled off sucessfully, and here’s hoping that the criminal organisation known as the “church” of $cientology will find itself less and less capable of keeping families apart.

  • Missionary Kid

    I’m happy and sad at the same time. Happy that Lori was able to see her son and talk to him, as well as give him the knowledge, if he thinks, that he’s been lied to.

    I’m sad that she had to go through all of this just to see her son.

    May the reign of idiocy called Co$ be ended soon, especially for her family and all the others that are disconnected.

  • *HUGS* Congratulations, Lori. This is wonderful news. I hope the rest of your visit goes as well. *crossing fingers* Now I need to go hug my daughter and find a big box of tissue.

  • Love my sister 🙂

  • MissCandle

    Happy Mothers’ Day, Lori and Dee! I will think of you when I hug my own child on Sunday.

  • HeatherGraceful

    You are awesome women. Very well done, Lori and Dee. I remember when Adrian Kelsey pulled off a surprise visit to his son in the RPF in Sydney, he came away unsure if his visit would have any lasting impact, but just happy to have been able to tell Shane he was loved. Six days later, Shane made a run for it. Today, he’s studying at university.

    You just never know how a visit, a hug and some loving, sane words will impact a person in contrast to the lies, pressure and insanity of the CoS.

  • Marta

    Happy, Happy Mother’s Day to you both, indeed! A well planned and carried out caper, ladies. I’ll toast this weekend to your milestone and offer a moment of silence for all of the family disconnected from each other. Happy and sad. This is Why.

  • I will always love the squirrel busters… nothing has ever better exemplified Scientology.

    • Poison Ivy

      Mmmmm….and CO$ total tone deafness and blindness to how their ridiculous and harrasing shenanigans appear to the outside world.
      Davey really did think the idea of the Squirrel Busters was cool!
      He thought he’d harass Marty, but he had no clue how the rest of the sane world would perceive it.
      That’s what happens when you almost never go outside your barbed wire fortress for decades on end. You forget how real people think. That is, if you ever knew it at all.

  • Sherbet

    What everyone said. Choked up and smiling here. WTG, Mom and Nana.

  • I’m gonna go call my mom and my gramma.

  • Was this in the Austin press? This story should reach a larger number of readers. I guess OSA is not as sharp as they once were… maybe it’s the “brain drain” from the church’s declining membership.
    NUTS TO YOU, “Squirrel Busters”! Your “COB” is going to be very cross with you. 🙂

    • FistOfXenu

      Yep. They started out chasing squirrels but they ended up holding their nuts.

      • You’re a crack-up, Fisty 🙂

        • FistOfXenu

          Better than being cracked, right? 😉

  • Spackle Motion

    I’ve been sitting here thinking if I would be publicizing this if I were her because it may hamper her ability to see him again. And it may get her son a boat load of trouble. She did publicize it regardless of the consequences to her own needs and she did it to prove a point. I applaud that. She’s got courage.

    • BuryTheNuts2

      I struggled with that too. But then I realized if she didn’t publicize it….what would it change?
      He is going to be in trouble either way. Hopefully it all leads him to the right pathway OUT.

      • Observer

        Exactly. And maybe it will inspire a flood of Mom Covert Ops. OSA can’t handle everyone at once.

        • BuryTheNuts2

          OSA can’t find thier ass with both hands these days!

          Whoo hooo!

          • FistOfXenu

            They need to “exteriorize” out of it 1st.

            • Sherbet

              Jeez, I missed your wit, Fist. You haven’t been around much.

            • FistOfXenu

              Sorry Sherbet. I needed a little time away from the cult and the wife and I like driving out in the countryside in the spring. And thinking about $cientarCONon always makes me want to go see the kids. But I miss you people so here I am. Glad to be back when it’s such great news!

            • Sherbet

              I hear ya, Fist. If we didn’t take those small mental vacations from cos, we’d be babbling like, oh, Jenna Elfman before long.

      • FistOfXenu

        Yup. He’d’ve filled in a KR by now. Probably already had his 1st sec check. And if he decided to try the thing about getting his dad to talk to Lori he’d know better than to keep it a secret.

    • villagedianne

      Yeah, I wondered about that too. Maybe it was felt that this was the right time to publicize it. Lori has already seen her son, and now the “world” is watching to see what happens next.

    • Casabeca

      I worry about all the ph calls he may get from now to mothers day, pressuring him not to let her “win”. I think I would have delayed the sharing by a few days.
      But she may have a very good reason to do otherwise. Wishing the all the best outcomes.

      • Spackle Motion

        I doubt that Lori went into this without knowing all potential outcomes. She strikes me as a tough cookie that knows the game by now. What she did was brave and most likely made an impact on her son.

  • Ze Moo

    Burn in hell LRH and dave miscavige….

  • scnethics

    What a beautiful and touching story! Way to go Lori and Dee!

  • Sidney18511

    You go Lori! May things work out for the best. A mothers love is
    NOT something to be messed with! The precious bond between a mother and her child will never/can never be broken. God speed Lori. May the COS burn in hell.

  • its almost too horrible to comprehend. lori, you have my complete admiration… i probably would have fallen right into osa’s hands long ago by trying to deck anyone who would seperate me from my children. “love is more powerful than mind control” Steve Hassan

  • Happy Mothers day Dee and Lori. Your children would have so much more fun riding cycles around the lake then sec checking in Texas. I hope they decide to go home with you.
    Talk about ethical people of the planet. I wish tom cruise and all those others caught in the web could read this thread today, to have a chance to see the heart felt opinions expressed by the folks they refer to as disgruntled and bigoted toward their precious church. They might actually catch a glimpse of a clue in here. The person is always more important than the org.

    • Observer

      While I wholeheartedly agree, I’m starting to think Tom is irredeemable. I hope I’m wrong.

      • Sherbet

        I’m not as noble as you, George and Observer. TC has done so much damage through his arrogant braying about scientology, that I hope he never wakes up. I hope some day he’s sitting alone and depressed, taking stock of his three failed marriages and distance from his third child, maybe — finally — aware that there are major cracks in the fakeness of his alleged church, and wondering what the heck went wrong with the idealistic pablum he spouted. Karma.

        • FistOfXenu

          What? You mean you want him to die alone and in the dark? Don’t tell NextMrsTomCruise

          • Sherbet

            I don’t want him to die, just to be semi-miserable in the dark. And if I know The Next Mrs., she’ll have grabbed onto some of TC’s fortune, due to a generous pre-nup, and will have beat a hasty retreat as The Next Ex-Mrs.

  • Chocolate Velvet

    I have deep admiration for Lori, her determination and ingenuity in getting to her son.  There are so many things in this world, not just the COS, that break up families and harden people’s hearts towards their loved ones.  The only way to combat that is by a firm commitment to keep loving the people we love, and to do what it takes for as long as it takes to get through.  Lori and Dee are great examples of that.  Motherlove in action.

    This, this is how it’s done.  Now, thanks to the brave acts of his Mom and Grandma, Jeremy can see the truth, and he knows he has a choice.  May that seed of understanding take root and bring him and his sister back into their Mom’s life.

  • Lori, you’re an amazing person. Your strength and love for your children is something that will never go away. Keep persisting and never give up on them. Much love and support to you.

  • dwayners13

    Not even the powers of an OSA OT can stop a mother who wants to see her child.

  • FistOfXenu

    If there was even 1 real OT Lori and her mother couldn’t have visited Jeremy.
    If there was even 1 real OT this web site wouldn’t be here.

    • BuryTheNuts2


      Consider THAT Scientologists!

      It is all a labyrinth of lies.

    • Observer

      Yet there are a plethora of at-cause SPs. Ya gotta wonder, don’t you, Scientologists? Where *are* all these OT powers? If LRH’s tech is so powerful, why doesn’t your confront–what few, feeble examples we’ve seen–shatter us like Ron promised? HINT: It has nothing to do with any failure on your part. The real reason is that THE TECH DOES NOT WORK. There is no “tech”. LRH pulled it all out of his voluminous backside.

    • Bob

      Good point FOX. Real OTs don’t disconnect, they handle and they understand other people’s points of view. Being in the thick of it I am in contact with people who are suppose to be real OTs. I have not found one real one yet. They are shm-OTs. If there are any, they are long gone from the church.

      • FistOfXenu

        Thing is I know a pretty good number of people that understand other people and communicate really well about all kinds of things. Not a single 1 of them is an OT and a lot of them hardly even know $cientarCONon exists. They just know how to act like humans with other humans and that looks like making them “work” better than OTs in a whole bunch of different ways.

        • Bob

          Yes you are right. OT is just a label that denotes certain qualities, Like genius, prodigy, humanitarian etc. but the qualities are so specific no one in Scn has attained them. In their own minds maybe.

  • aquaclara

    Lori, you’re a remarkable mom. And Dee, you are, too, for being there to support your daughter and grandson. Wishing you both a joyous and safe Mother’s Day this year. It was worth all the extraordinary effort you had to take just to be able to hug your son. *HUGS* to you both! I hope the rest of your trip is filled with love and hope and good times.

    Now a few choice words to COB. Pull off the dogs, stop the squirrel-hunting, and leave them in peace. You can do it. Just say the word.
    And then after that, fix the rest of the disconnection problem in your cult. Destroying families through all of your inter-related little ventures, from Narconon to Able, the IAS and all the rest, will ultimately be the piece that takes down your little global mountain of chicanery.
    Your own mother would thank you. Do it for her.

  • Sidney18511

    To all the members of the OSA and any other church members reading this story…..this could happen to YOU and YOUR family one day. How crazy is it that a church, YOUR church can take YOUR loved one, YOUR child out of your life.

  • Not to change the topic, because this is a great story, but once again: It is astonishing that Scientology is able to track people through airline tickets, car reservations, etc. And yet it seems they really do this. There are so many things Scientology should be busted for, and this is a pretty blatant one. I remember in 2008 we tried to get to get Homeland Security interested, but they couldn’t be bothered.

  • N. Graham

    Good luck Lori! While you’re in Austin, enjoy your stay in the live music capital, eat some tex-mex food and you could definitely pick worse places to wait in. Maybe you’ll even run into Tommy Davis!

  • No sane person could read this and deny that the Church of Scientology is an evil cult and hate group. Just such a heartbreaking situation.

  • Way to go LORI HODGSON!!!

    A mother’s love is the strongest thing in the universe. It can melt mountains.

    Scientology? plllfffpf.

    I hope we’ll be getting daily updates from Tony’s blog about how the trip is going.


  • villagedianne

    I’m very happy to read that Lori seems to have started to get through to her son.
    I have a feeling that Lori and her family’s importance to OSA has less to do with her and her family, and more to do with Lori’s connection to Marty. I think COS wants to send a message that any ex who meets with Marty will be given an exceptionally tough time by the “church”.

  • stillgrace

    Good for you, Lori! Happy Mother’s Day. You are such a good and loyal mother, never give up!

    I shuddered each time I read Jeremy say “You know what to do to fix it.” NO!! NO!! NO!!
    That is NOT the way to fix it, Jeremy! I hope you learn this truth soon. Jeremy, I’d give anything to have my Mom back for just one day. Your Mom is right there, right now, and loves you so much. Please value that!!! It’s so much more important than any organization.

  • What a WONDERFUL, WONDERFUL day for you all! 😀 I hope he wakes up and stays in more comm with you guys and you get to see your daughter soon, too!

  • ThetaBara

    Having to go through all of that for a 45 minute visit at work… GAH.
    I gotta go, I think there’s something in my eye.

  • Pinkhammer

    Why is it that no one thinks of the ridiculous amount of money OSA is spending monitoring and chasing SPs all over the planet?! I mean, since they’re becoming more and more ineffective. shouldn’t they be spending that hard-regged cash on happiness booklets or some other nonsense that is supposed to actually help the world? They could at least buy the Sea Org an occasional hot dog…

  • I’m so proud of Lori & Nonie! My hero’s and I couldn’t love them more!

  • kiki dee

    Greta story, but isn’t it illegal to follow someone? Why was she so afraid of OSA’s deviant antics. Had she been followed, couldn’t she have reported them to the police?

    • TonyOrtega

      She has. But don’t get us started on the pitiful efforts of law enforcement when it comes to OSA…

      • aquaclara

        That’s sad, and also worthy of an article itself. It’s shocking to see that OSA still has such power to control and intimidate.
        I hope Lori and Dee stay safe over the next couple of days.

  • q-bird

    1 Mom + another Mom = “It was my Mother’s Day wish to see my son, and I did it.”
    Powerful powerful message here – Bravo!!! Well played Dee & Lori!

    I am wondering, has Jeremy healed well from his motorcycle accident?

  • My heart breaks for you Lori, and also I am SO happy that you got to spend a few precious minutes with your son. I am at a loss for words to describe how sad and angry I feel about how Co$ (and other cults) break up families. Having experienced a version of this myself, I know intimately the frustration, rage, helplessness and loss that one feels when a family is torn apart like this; with lies and greed and the worst kind of coercion and manipulation. But I agree with what another Bunkee said, “Love cannot be stopped.”

    I applaud you, Lori, and your mom, for your courage and tenacity. You are a Super Mom! From now on, no matter what, your son knows you love him. You showed him that with your actions and whatever happens no one can take that moment away when he saw you and realized you’d come all that way to see him.

    I will be thinking of you this Mother’s Day, and of all the mothers who have lost their children to cults, and holding you in my heart.

  • Sidney18511

    Lori, your son told you he loves you too! He loves you. Hold on to that.

  • Bob

    What a wonderful Mother’s Day story. Lori looks great and is demonstrating what a great mom she is.

    Psyentology is so full of dichotomies. On one hand to be an OT you have to have all your dynamics in and operating smoothly and if they are not then you are screwed. On the other hand it perfectly acceptable to destroy family bonds and disable the 2nd dynamic because the church HAS TO FOLLOW THE DISCONNECTION POLICIES. That kind of stress is one of the factors that is killing off clams right and left.

  • InTheNameOfXenu

    Bravo! A heart-warming story. I’m real happy for Lori.

    Get it through your heads all you Indies and Freezoners! This is L. Ron Hubbard policy designed to break up families when one member breaks free of Scientology’s mind-control. Miscavige is just following Hubbard’s orders. Scientology is not to be questioned and for those that go against the grain are ousted. It’s a viscous cycle of tearing apart families all for the insane idea of ‘clearing’ the planet.

  • John P.

    Disconnection seems to be in the air today: an atheist blog I read has a story about a painful Jehovah’s Witnesses “disfellowshipping.” I naturally posted a comment pointing out that Scientology is worse, and linking to this article…

    • Missionary Kid

      Thanks for the reference. Excellent post.

    • Karen715

      Thanks for the link. I was wondering about which blog it might be when I read your post earlier. I agree with the general tone of the comments there. I think the “Scientology is no worse (or no more ridiculous) than other religions” line comes more from people who have reason to be Scientology apologists than from your average atheists. I am an atheist, and I do think that all religions are ridiculous (that doesn’t mean that some of them don’t do *some* good *some* times, so I hope my opinion doesn’t upset the religious posters here too much.) But I do believe that Scientology, with its money-grubbing and human rights abuses, and the JWs, whom I think beat down the human spirit in a different sort of way, are particularly bad. Of course that may be because I almost fell for both of them, and that makes it personal.

      • Casabeca

        Very personal, and sensitively stated. From one who still has faith :-). And all respect and love to those who differ. So glad we are all free to share.

  • Nina

    Now THAT’S what I’m talking about!!!!!! Best mother’s day gift ever- this story! Congratulations Lori- your courage and determination is an inspiration…. Happy mother’s day to all <3

  • ParticleMom

    As a mother, this absolutely breaks my heart. I keep crying at the thought of having to sneak around to get to see my son for only 45 minutes after 2 years.

    No one deserves to go through this.

  • ParticleMom

    I wonder if the down arrower will be allowed to read this one? Stats are due soon!

    • Observer

      I think you’ve got your answer. lol

  • KMNF

    It sounds like Ms Hodgson did a great job.

    Jeremy will have to reconcile what he saw and experienced from mom, with the lies of OSA. Or hopefully, he won’t.

  • aquaclara

    A special note to the Down Arrowers,

    Please, please, please take a moment this week to reach out to your mom, your sister, your child. Give one of them a call or simply drop them a note from you if you can. There will be a day when you look back upon this and recognize how important it was to say “I love you” to those who love you. Before the time runs out.

    And, in case you want to know:
    It’s ok to question.
    It’s ok to read things.
    Freeloaders debt is not enforceable, and you will not have to pay it when you leave.
    Life on the outside is good. Very good.
    It’s ok to leave.

  • richelieu jr

    I am so glad to hear you got to see your soon, but was publishing this so soon a good idea (sorry, I don’t know when Mother’s Day is in the US, I’m guessing today)?

    I just finished Jenna Miscavige’s book (boy has she had a singular life!) and I was so encouraged to find out how these little experiences when reality breaks through can finally blossom into the whole rancid shell cracking and falling away…

    I hope it happens for you, Lori.

    • N G

      I notice that most of these comments have three down arrows today. That is very odd, since the article is really simply about a mother and son who love each other. I can’t see anything to complain about. The Scientologists who are doing the down arrows should know that in the outside world, families take care of each other. Many Scientologists are leaving the church because they are getting tired of always being asked for money, and many are not even getting the services they expect to help them up the Bridge. It seems all the money is going for buildings – there are few new public, auditors, or clears. It seems that the church has lost its way.

    • aquaclara

      Hi, Mother’s Day is this coming Sunday. it’s a customary day for making Mom breakfast, taking her out to brunch or perhaps dinner, or sending flowers. We do not do dishes on this day. Most of the flowers sent are by women for their moms. The diners will have lines out the door, and if one forgot to make reservations for a lovely special brunch, it’s probably too late now. New moms, grandmoms, daughters who have had children all are ack’d for being special! There are no kids’ baseball games on this day.
      Now, Father’s Day is in June, and they are typically honored with bad ties, funny cards, the occasional cigar, or time off to go play golf if they enjoy that. There are always double-headers for kids baseball games on this day, plus the odd dance recital here or there for extra fun.
      And any similar holidays for you?

      • richelieu jr

        Yes, we have the same days, but not on the same dates.. Basically it is seen as an American plot to sell more stuff…
        It is pretty traditional for you to bring your mom flowers every tie you come over for Sunday lunch (or whatever) over here (you never go to anybody’s place for dinner without a little gift!)

        For father’s day, I don’t think we do anything.. Buy socks, maybe?

        • aquaclara

          That’s it! Flowers for mom and socks for dad!
          I like your tradition of flowers for Sunday lunch! Other than in NYC, where it is easy and inexpensive to pick up a bunch of flowers from the corner fruit stand, those purchased elsewhere still fall into pretty traditional events. Recitals, proms, weddings, Mother’s Day and well, funerals.
          My lilacs are in full bloom today… Don’t they smell great?!

  • SP ‘Onage

    What a heartwarming story!

    Lori, I am so happy for you and Dee’s face to face reunion with your son. The most beautiful necklace a mother can wear is not gold or gems, but her child’s arms around her neck.

    Your story is an amazing story of courage, perseverance and the power of love. I am so glad you shared this experience with us. I like the way you used a throwaway phone like Katie Holmes did. 🙂

    Here’s some tips on stopping scientology ‘s secret police from GPS tracking you and monitoring you illegally.

    1. Report it to the DOJ.

    2. Report it to your cell phone providers security division. Most are happy to check your phone for spy software. My provider did.

    3. Change your voicemail password frequently.

    4. Reset your phone back to factory settings.

    5. Turn GPS, Wi-Fi, and Bluetooth off on your phone. Especially Bluetooth. All OSA has to do is stand next to you in the check-in stand and they will be able to transfer a spy software bug into your phone via Bluetooth, which can monitor your e-mails, text messages, and they can see and hear everything you do and say, even with phone off.

    Never click on text message links or download picture attachments. Isn’t it sad that you have to be paranoid of a so called church. 🙁

    6. Stop GPS tracking by wrapping your cell phone in tinfoil. You already know taking out the battery works, but for added protection wrap the battery in tinfoil because some batteries have GPS tracking built into the battery.

    You can also get a (x-ray) film pouch to put your phone in called: Domke 711-11B Small Filmguard Bag. You can buy it on Amazon for $19.99. I think they sell larger ones that will fit your iPad.

    Or Stop Cell Phone Tracking and Bugging with the DETRACKTOR. You can buy it on eBay.

    If you want cheap protection for your phone you can always use a potatoe chip bag that has a foil lining inside. It works great! 🙂

    Good luck and stay strong! I hope one of these days your son will break free from the binds that prevent him from seeing you.

    Watch this investigative news TV video to see how easy it really is for Scientology ‘s secret police to track you, I assure you, no conversation is private any longer.

    • grundoon

      Might as well wrap your head in tinfoil.

      A Scientologist working at a travel agency can get airline and car reservation info. They don’t need to track your cell phone.

  • Carrie Johnston

    I think Lori allowed Tony to post this now because she is going to be in Austin for the next, what, 4-5 days? She knows what she is doing and is ready for the confrontation. It was purposeful. HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY LORI!!! Sounds like you got everything you wanted (and maybe more to come). Great article.

    To 3 Down Arrow Guy: You can post here, it’s a free country. We would like to know your opinions and thoughts. Start a dialogue, we don’t know what you mean by just a down arrow.

    Mrs. Libnish

  • Rita Gregory

    Lori so happy you saw your son!

  • DeElizabethan

    So very happy for you Lori. Happy Mother’s Day!

  • chisheila

    Oh, Lori. The heartbreak you and your children have suffered. What a gorgeous thing to see your son again, to share hugs, to mend so much of the tear. My love and best wishes to you and your family that you all end up together soon and this meddling church completely loses its power over both your children and they find their way home. To you. To life. To themselves.

  • And how brave of you Lori. You were able to evade the eye of the Dark Lord Sauron and were able to break through the psychological land of Mordor to see your son. And how evil this cult is in that they call good evil and evil good and they even train people to love their slavery and to believe it is a good thing to be slaves so that they can help others.

  • Poison Ivy

    Tears in my eyes for this Mother’s Day story. I just love the fact that former Scientologists are empowering one another to stand up to the draconian policies, particularly disconnection. Just the fact that Jeremy could see that they LIED to him about his Mom…it’s a crack in the plaster. Even if only a tiny bit of sunlight seeps through that crack, it’s still pierced through the darkness just a little bit more. Keeping chipping away at that wall, Lori…there is nothing stronger in this universe than the power of a Mother’s love.
    Happy Mother’s Day to all the Moms on this forum, – connected, disconnected, in our out, old or young.

  • Concerns_of_a_Father

    Awesome story Tony. Way to promote some love amongst all the ugliness the cult is involved in. You da man!

  • “There has to be a way, besides me going back in the church, for us to be together,” she told him. “Don’t you think there’s a way we could be together?”

    She says that he responded with a noncommittal “maybe.”


    The more tolerant principles in the UN Declaration of Human Rights, are principles that overcome the disconnection practice of Scientology.

    People who decide to leave the official Scientology religion, are NOT bound by the A to E steps.

    All one has to do, is recognize one is choosing a different, new, faith/religious/philosophical outlook, and one is in principle NOT obligated to any longer follow official Scientology’s A to E steps, which apply to the particular extreme fundamentalist form of official Scientology.

    One can be a non official Scientologist, and one can be whatever new philosophical or religious outlook one chooses, and one is NOT obligated to “handle” one’s relationship with Scientology by submitting to the A to E steps.

    One only need be “good roads and fair weather” and adopt the more tolerant solution of human history, which is not discuss upsetting religion discussions, with family members of differing religious beliefs/systems.

    Good roads and fair weather are actually Scientology’s own “handling” for critical parents.

    I think the best approach is just be good roads fair weather with fundamentalist official Scientologists, and let them know that the world expects Scientology to abide by the UN Declaration of Human Rights, and respect the rights of members who choose to leave fundamentalist official Scientology with no intention of ever doing steps A to E to “handle” their relations with Scientology.

    Official Scientology’s expectation that members like Lori are obligated to do steps A to E are out of alignment with the principles in the UN Declaration of Human Rights, and it is official Scientology that is in the wrong.

    Good roads, fair weather, is all the world expects, as the bar to pass, to allow family members of differing religious or philosophical views, to be in continued friendly familial contact!

    If official Scientology could make just that tiny change, that would be monumental in Scientology overall history!

  • DodoTheLaser

    Dear Lori,

    Thank you for being such a good Mom!

    I pray some day soon, your kids will be proud of you
    and their Grandma too.

    You have a beautiful heart!

    That’s all I can type, before something will wet my eyes.