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Scientology’s ‘Ideal’ program really reaching at this point as it eyes a city without an org

Houston

 
Houston, Texas is now the fourth-largest city in the United States, and with 2.2 million people, it’s only outdone by New York (8.5 million), Los Angeles (3.9 million), and Chicago (2.7 million).

Yet, despite that size and rank, Houston only rates a Scientology mission, and not an org.

If you think about it, that’s pretty astounding. For how many years has Scientology claimed that it has millions and millions of members, and yet in the country’s fourth biggest city, it can only manage a mission, an outlet that these days tends to have something like 50 to 100 active members, depending on how well it’s doing.

That doesn’t compute. Let’s compare the situation to that of Jehovah’s Witnesses, who, when they say they have almost 8 million people in the country, can back it up with some evidence. In the Houston area alone, we counted 16 different Kingdom Halls, and that’s from a cursory look at Google Maps.

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The truth is, Scientology has never had the numbers it’s claimed. A recent high-level defector says that the total number of active Church of Scientology members around the world is now down to less than 20,000.

So, no wonder Scientology can only manage a tiny mission in one of the bigger cities on earth.

But that isn’t going to stop David Miscavige from doing his best to pretend that the situation in Houston is very different. Tomorrow, Houstonian Scientologists are being encouraged to attend a meeting to discuss plans for opening an “Ideal Org” in Houston.

Clearly, there’s no call for a new, expensive building that will cost something like $10 million or more to purchase and renovate. But Houston without an org is an embarrassment to Scientology, and Miscavige is apparently getting around to doing something about it, even if there’s no evidence of a surge of interest in Scientology in the area. Take a look at the flier that went out to local members…

 
SciHou

 
Here’s the very interesting caption that went with this Instagram flier…

In Houston? We are invited! To an amazing event this Sat July 2nd at 7pm! Flag World Tour (Church of Scientology Headquarters in Clearwater Fl)! Event at Houston Hyatt! Buffet before and after event! Free Event! Let’s show our support! Also the Church of Scientology just released tonite that they got the go ahead to Look for an Ideal org bldg of 50k Square feet! We are going Ideal Org right here in Houston! How exciting! Some things they shared at last event- been Clearing The Caribbean! Been teaching Police Human rights and teaching in schools plus teaching gangs, rappers, and the Community! They have Cleared a whole country in South America! By Allah’s grace! And teaching others how to work together collectively during Natural Disasters! Let’s implement their Modern technology in our Communities with our people! We are striving to build a Cadre of Saviours for The honorable minister Louis Farrakhan! Be there! This Saturday at 7pm! Hyatt by Galleria.

That caption reminds us that the Nation of Islam and Scientology are still undergoing a very strange symbiotic relationship. Back in about 2006, NOI’s Louis Farrakhan had a revelation that there was something valuable in the writings of the whitest man on earth, L. Ron Hubbard, and his 1950 book Dianetics. Since then, Farrakhan has pushed his followers to get Dianetic training (Pre e-meter, Book One auditing), and some NOI members have gone on to do Scientology courses as well.

Can the involvement of NOI members help raise the money needed for an Ideal Org in Houston? We have a feeling this one is going to need a big, fat IAS grant to get done. But to Miscavige, it’s always worth it to have a grand opening he can attend, even if the local city doesn’t really need another empty Scientology facility.

 
Speaking of Nation of Islam members, we have to ask, where did they get this really spooky cardboard cutout of Captain David Miscavige at the Fort Harrison Hotel?

 
SciFlag8

 
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NEW DATE FOR CLEARWATER BILLBOARD CELEBRATION

 
Billboard2

 
Phil Jones tells us that he’s moving the date for the dedication ceremony of his newest “Call Me” billboard, in Clearwater, Florida. To get the biggest crowd that he can, he says he needs to move the date to Saturday, July 23.

We’ll reveal the location of the billboard once it’s up. But Phil asks that you do your best to find a way to Clearwater on July 23 for a party.

 
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Jim Marrs and CBS gild David Miscavige’s lily-white…socks

 

CBS46 News

 
We need to take UFOs seriously, which is why we need to read this turgid doorstop? Wow, Marrs really pushes hard to make this book seem relevant.

 
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The class of 2016

We can hardly believe that 2016 is already halfway done. As we prepare for the downhill slide to the fall and the holidays (gulp), we wanted to pause for a moment and reflect on where we’ve been. We thought you might be interested to see what are the 15 most-read stories in the Bunker so far in 2016…

 
1. How Lisa Marie Presley became Scientology leader David Miscavige’s worst nightmare (April 21)
2. The Billboad Is Up: Scientology’s ‘disconnection’ on view in Los Angeles (April 4)
3. Lucia Ribisi ditches Scientology and says of famous dad Giovanni: ‘He’s questioned it’ (April 6)
4. Yes, that was a Scientology ad you saw during the Super Bowl. Here’s what’s in it. (February 7)
5. Ron Miscavige book out in May: ‘Ruthless: Scientology, My Son David Miscavige, and Me’ (March 16)
6. Scientology’s Space Man: The newest defector from church management opens up (February 12)
7. Scientology leader David Miscavige threatens to sue father over book (April 26)
8. Ron Miscavige’s ‘Ruthless’ includes Lisa Marie Presley’s wild defection scene in Florida (May 2)
9. Leah Remini is shooting a TV series about Scientology (June 27)
10. Stalked in a New Orleans cemetery: Scientology’s secretive defectors getting more open (January 18)
11. Ron Miscavige, his book ‘Ruthless’ his nervous son, and Scientology Watching’s new reality (April 29)
12. Astra Woodcraft, ex-Scientology kid, wants you to read a short essay (April 12)
13. On the 8th anniversary of the Anonymous protests, more signs of Scientology’s desperation (February 10)
14. A Star Is Born: Scientology attorney Monique Yingling steals the spotlight on ’20/20′ (April 30)
15. It’s a miracle! Scientology put ‘more than 10,000’ people in these 1,000 chairs! (May 29)

 
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3D-UnbreakablePosted by Tony Ortega on July 1, 2016 at 07:00

E-mail tips and story ideas to tonyo94 AT gmail DOT com or follow us on Twitter. We post behind-the-scenes updates at our Facebook author page. After every new story we send out an alert to our e-mail list and our FB page.

Our book, The Unbreakable Miss Lovely: How the Church of Scientology tried to destroy Paulette Cooper, is on sale at Amazon in paperback and Kindle editions. We’ve posted photographs of Paulette and scenes from her life at a separate location. Reader Sookie put together a complete index. More information about the book, and our 2015 book tour, can also be found at the book’s dedicated page.

Learn about Scientology with our numerous series with experts…

BLOGGING DIANETICS: We read Scientology’s founding text cover to cover with the help of L.A. attorney and former church member Vance Woodward
UP THE BRIDGE: Claire Headley and Bruce Hines train us as Scientologists
GETTING OUR ETHICS IN: Jefferson Hawkins explains Scientology’s system of justice
SCIENTOLOGY MYTHBUSTING: Historian Jon Atack discusses key Scientology concepts

Other links: Shelly Miscavige, ten years gone | The Lisa McPherson story told in real time | The Cathriona White stories | The Leah Remini ‘Knowledge Reports’ | Hear audio of a Scientology excommunication | Scientology’s little day care of horrors | Whatever happened to Steve Fishman? | Felony charges for Scientology’s drug rehab scam | Why Scientology digs bomb-proof vaults in the desert | PZ Myers reads L. Ron Hubbard’s “A History of Man” | Scientology’s Master Spies | Scientology’s Private Dancer | The mystery of the richest Scientologist and his wayward sons | Scientology’s shocking mistreatment of the mentally ill | Scientology boasts about assistance from Google | The Underground Bunker’s Official Theme Song | The Underground Bunker FAQ

Our Guide to Alex Gibney’s film ‘Going Clear,’ and our pages about its principal figures…
Jason Beghe | Tom DeVocht | Sara Goldberg | Paul Haggis | Mark “Marty” Rathbun | Mike Rinder | Spanky Taylor | Hana Whitfield

 

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