NEW SCIENTOLOGY CHURCH ON WASHINGTON D.C.’S “CHURCH ROW”
OCTOBER 31, 2009
Mr. David Miscavige, Chairman of the Board of Religious Technology Center and ecclesiastical leader of the Scientology religion, dedicated the new home of the Founding Church of Scientology of Washington, DC, on October 31, 2009, calling the day “historic in every respect.”
Located six blocks from the White House, the newly restored 49,000-square-foot building represents the largest-ever presence for Scientology in the nation’s capital, a presence that began in 1955 with establishment of the DC Church by Founder L. Ron Hubbard.
Among those attending to honor the landmark day and addressing the gathering of more than 3,000 were the Honorable Brad Sherman, U.S. Congressman from California’s 27th District; Ms. Addie Richburg, President and Chairman of the Board of the National Alliance of Faith and Justice; Ms. Diana Rothe-Smith, Executive Director of the National Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster (NVOAD); and Mr. Mike Silverstein, President of the Dupont Circle Advisory Neighborhood Commission, representing District of Columbia Mayor Adrian M. Fenty.
Congressman Sherman praised the Church’s efforts in raising awareness of the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Remarking that the battle includes bringing awareness to all people, he said, “That is why the efforts of many churches and religious organizations to focus on human rights issues are so important.”
But what made the day truly momentous was the presence and address by Mr. Miscavige who spoke of both L. Ron Hubbard’s and the Church’s long history in the nation’s capital. In particular, and in context of both American history and culture, he spoke of, “A Declaration of Independence, wherein it is written that all men are endowed with certain inalienable rights—including the right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.
“To which we of this Church would add:
“That all men of whatever race, color or creed were created with equal rights.
“That the souls of men have the rights of men.
“And that no agency less than God has the power to suspend or set aside those rights.
“For that is what our Founder declared in the Creed of our Church.
“So yes, you are looking at a living embodiment of the freedom and equality that originally inspired this nation. Because, yes, this Church stands for life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. And, yes, it stands here today because of the freedom on which this nation was built—the freedom of religion.
“For it was here, in this nation’s capital, that we fought for and won our recognition. And all which has made it possible for us to reach out the world over with our programs to bring the American dream of freedom to every being of every nation.
“And with the opening of this new Church, our unqualified help will now extend even farther.”
With those words, and joined by the honored guests, Mr. Miscavige cut the ribbon, heralding a new era of freedom for all.