Scientology in New Zealand discussion thread

Discussion in 'Education, Research and Inside Reports' started by anonyrat, Feb 21, 2008.

  1. Scientology can help with that.
  2. The Wrong Guy Member

    Scientologist doctor invites patients to opening of $16m New Zealand headquarters |


    A scientologist doctor invited patients at her 'holistic' medical practice to the opening of a $16m New Zealand Scientologist headquarters.

    Dr Helen Smith invited patients from the Auckland Holistic Centre to attend the grand opening at a restored heritage building in central Auckland on January 21.

    Several patients were understood to have felt the invitations were inappropriate.

    Smith declined to comment, referring inquiries about the opening to Sei Kato, a spokesperson for the Church of Scientology in Australia and Asia Pacific.

    Auckland University law professor Bill Hodge said if the contact details of patients had been used to send them an invite for something unrelated to their medical care, then it could constitute a breach of the Privacy Act.

    "The patients can lay a complaint with the Privacy Commissioner if they feel aggrieved.

    "The Privacy Act clearly states that you can't use information collected for example by a medical practise and spam those patients to promote something else entirely," said Hodge.

    Continued at
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  3. DeathHamster Member

    Fucker's name changes spelling every other news article!

    Category:Mike Ferriss
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  4. The Wrong Guy Member

    New Zealand, David Miscavige is in you

    By Tony Ortega, January 20, 2017


    As this story goes live at 7 am Eastern time here in New York, it will be 1 am on Saturday in Auckland, New Zealand. And that means we’re only about 13 hours away from Scientology leader David Miscavige’s big appearance for the grand opening of an “Ideal Org” in that fair city.

    For our newer readers, we’ll provide a little context. Beginning around 2002 or 2003, Miscavige was faced with having to replace Scientology churches — called “orgs” — in three cities for various reasons: in Buffalo, New York; Johannesburg, South Africa; and Tampa, Florida. According to former Scientology spokesman Mike Rinder, Miscavige was also thinking about something he’d been told by Tom Cruise, who had been embarrassed to bring a friend to the Tampa facility because it was such a shithole. So Miscavige announced the “Ideal Org” program, and over the last fourteen years he’s been on a manic buying spree, purchasing historic buildings around the world and renovating them to replace more mundane orgs.

    But New Zealand is special and here’s why. The Ideal Org program has mostly been about insanely intense fundraising. In places like Portland, Oregon and Phoenix, Arizona, the local Scientologists were pressured for years to raise the money to buy a building and renovate it. It was all on the locals to make an Ideal Org happen, and for years Miscavige pitted the people of one city against another as they tried to find the cash for these expensive projects.

    And so when it was announced several years ago that Auckland was getting an Ideal Org, Miscavige didn’t even try to pretend that the locals could pay for it. We remember seeing that announcement, and that the Auckland org would be paid for by the IAS itself (the International Association of Scientologists is a massive membership fund at Miscavige’s disposal; former executives tell us it has more than a billion in ready cash).

    Why the largesse? Because New Zealand Scientologists are rarer than Hobbit holes in that country. But how could an entire English-language country not have an Ideal Org? You see Miscavige’s dilemma.

    So, later today, we hope to begin getting reports from our correspondents on the scene as Miscavige deigns to appear and bestow on New Zealand the Ideal Org he was so generous as to pay for himself. Or rather, with the money of the whales who donate to the IAS.

    We should begin hearing something after around 7pm here in New York, and please, if you’re on the scene, be polite and orderly.

    Source, and open comments:
  5. The Wrong Guy Member

    Miscavige did his thing for the Kiwis

    By Tony Ortega, January 21, 2017


    Photos and reports are still trickling in, but in general this appears to be another rather underwhelming turnout for David Miscavige as he anointed a new Ideal Org in Auckland earlier today. Our correspondent on the scene, a Kiwi, told us he heard nothing but Australian accents, suggesting that much of the crowd was flown over for the occasion. (And here’s a report from local reporter Kim Vinnell which is quite good.)

    Well, New Zealand, you have your own Ideal Org now. We’ll check back with you in a few months to see if it becomes an empty shell like the others, populated only by these freaky dolls.

    Source, with photos:
  6. White Tara Global Moderator

    Nice, It might be too soon to call but it seems to me that Scientology is taking up the Trumpian strategy of labeling all negative press as 'lying media' A potentially effective strategy for keeping potential recruits viable in the face of overwhelmingly damning reports across the mainstream media.
  7. The Wrong Guy Member

    Undercover at the opening of Scientology’s new Auckland headquarters

    The Church of Scientology opened a new $16 million headquarters in Auckland on Saturday. Hayden Donnell glides excitedly into the ceremony.

    By Hayden Donnell, The Spinoff


    Guy Williams had just been kicked out of Auckland’s new Scientology Centre when I walked in. He’d turned up with his brother Paul, who’d dressed up as the beautiful and talented Scientologist, Tom Cruise. Tickling chronicler David Farrier had also been ejected, despite being one of New Zealand’s leading disciples of Scientology. There was an unofficial media ban, and he’d tried to avoid it by wearing contacts and normal clothes. Williams had blown his cover by immediately yelling “David” when he turned up. It probably hadn’t made a difference. They’d both made the stupid mistake of appearing on TV. Luckily for me, I’ve never achieved any level of fame or success. I filled in a couple of routine forms. The bouncers let me in with barely a suspicious glance.

    Security was tight inside the $16 million headquarters. Smartly dressed men and women talked into pop star-style headsets in every corner. Suit-clad church officials kept an eye on the scruffy T shirt-wearing locals in the crowd. Cameras moved on jibs, filming the speakers and the audience. Everyone was gathered in front of the stage, which was nestled below a huge red bow that some compared to a giant anus.

    I stole a salmon crostini off a tray someone had discarded in a shrubbery and found a place in a bark garden near the back. From there I could squint up at the proceedings, away from the prying eyes of the faithful. There was a reason for the devotees’ vigilance. We were in the presence of religious royalty. The Chairman of the Board of the Religious Technology Center, David Miscavige, was in town for the opening.

    Getting him here was a big deal. Only Scientology founder L Ron Hubbard has had more influence on the global ascent of the religion. Few religious leaders are more influential or more controversial. Miscavige has built beautiful churches, or Ideal Orgs, across the globe, and, through the church’s drug-free world program, has helped thousands kick substance abuse. He’s also been accused of regularly beating employees who displease him. His wife hasn’t made any public appearances since 2007, and was once reported missing by former Scientologist Leah Remini. His own dad, a former Scientologist, wrote a book about how Miscavige is going overboard with the Scientology thing. The church has denied all accusations.

    Miscavige bounded on stage just before 3pm. His teeth were gleaming. They shone like glow worms trapped inside his face. The ecclesiastical leader of the Scientology religion was trim for 56, his 1m 55cm frame snug inside in a perfectly fitted suit. He looked like a more menacing Joel Osteen; the kind of man a robot would design if it was given only 1980s magazine images of a perfect American nuclear family. In normal New Zealand society, he’d probably be lambasted for not wearing enough jandals. But here he was in his element. He was setting off standing ovations and rapturous applause with every sentence. He was invoking what seemed to be deeply moving truths for many people. And he was talking complete gibberish.

    “When you touch down your timeframes are all but transcendent with an ETA from new OT 1, to OT2, OT3, new OT4 and OT5 until you enter a skyway from the purif to the new OT7 Solo Naught in less than a year and so become gods of the South Pacific,” he said to wild cheers.

    I grew up in a Baptist church, and have a high tolerance for indecipherable religious jargon. But this was intense even for me. I asked Farrier to review this section of the transcript.

    “Jesus. This is very dense,” he said. “OT 1 through OT 7 are all levels of Operating Thetan. The higher the number, the further up the chain you are. OT 8 is the highest, which is called “The Truth Revealed”, which is basically when they tell you about Xenu, the galactic overlord.”

    Miscavige went on to thank the heroes of the New Zealand Scientology movement. The church has deep ties here. We were the second country to adopt the religion after the US. Some of its top-ranking staff are Kiwis, including Mary Story, who runs the secretive Office of Special Affairs.

    On Saturday, Miscavige was most focused on the New Zealanders who’d laboured at home.

    “As LRH so evocatively wrote: there are gods above other gods and gods beyond the gods of the universes,” he continued. “Which in this case brings you to your Oceanic gods of ANZO. Those who proved nothing is impossible given pure hearts and number 8 wire mentality.”

    To me, it sounded like Miscavige was literally having a stroke. But the crowd stood as one to applaud after those words. He went on to thank many New Zealand church members individually. They stood, tears glistening on their cheeks as their works were read out. Then everyone got on stage, pulled a rope, the ribbons fell, and balloons rose into the sky to officially open the Centre.

    All the doors were opened. The crowd shuffled out of the ceremony and into the grounds. I learned, to my deep shame and elation, that salmon crostinis were everywhere. Scientology Auckland had put on a delicious spread for the seekers. There were cucumbers with sauce on, hummus bread things, filo pastries, and assorted cheeses. I ate them all to avoid suspicion and headed upstairs.

    Helpful Scientologists were stationed in just about every room. What struck me most was the contrast between the people I found in the corridors and the acronym-spewing man I’d seen on stage earlier. They were helpful and patient when asked to explain the sometimes bewildering rooms. One woman was happy to take photos of my friend Damian and I with the machines in an auditing room, which are used to assess the levels of spiritual distress in the hearts of prospective Scientologists.

    She didn’t look like the perfectly coiffed American church members; just a normal woman looking to find hope in a rigorous, expensive process of auditing. I carried on. Many of the rooms were sparsely decorated. The church had tried to liven them up by propping dolls on many of the seats.

    Others were unremarkable, with the only notable thing the bizarre nameplates on the desks.

    A wing of the building was reserved for purification – a rigorous programme of exercise and sauna sessions meant to cleanse the body of all the drugs it’s exposed to in everyday life. Scientology hates drugs almost as much as it hates psychiatrists, which it believes are poisoning the minds of everyday people. Miscavige had earlier joked about not only refusing to suffer psychiatrists acting above the law, but refusing to suffer “psychiatrists to act above the ground”. Lol.

    It all contributed to a vague otherworldly feel. The church was like an office block set up by aliens trying to fit into human society. Without the buttresses of long-standing tradition, most of its religious claims seemed kind of comical and ridiculous. But would some of the claims of our major religions look the same if they only got set up 60 years ago? While many people have looked at the menace lurking underneath its corporate facade, Scientology is valuable if you see at it as a huge piece of performance art aimed at showing how religions form; how people’s deep-seated desire for some kind of hope, structure and spirituality will propel them into expansive intellectual leaps.

    Even though many of the things about the church were clearly ludicrous, I could see how people would fall for the place: the feeling of self improvement and belonging that comes with being part of something bigger than yourself.

    I exited through the bookshop.

    Source, with many photos:
  8. The Wrong Guy Member

    David Miscavige’s Auckland Scientology HQ launch speech: as interpreted by David Farrier

    By David Farrier, The Spinoff

    Hayden Donnell went to the jaw-dropping opening of the New Zealand Church of Scientology on Saturday – you can read his account here. At the event Scientologist-in-chief David Miscavige spoke directly to the crowd. Here, top NZ Scientologist David Farrier attempts to explain what Miscavige is on about.
  9. The Wrong Guy Member

    An inside look at Auckland's new Church of Scientology | The New Zealand Herald


    The Herald was taken on a guided tour this afternoon.

    Despite the church's declared openness, a sermon was stopped abruptly as Herald staff entered the Chapel. The woman speaking was warned of a photographer's presence and instructed to talk about the weather. [Auckland Church of Scientology spokesman Nick] Banks was keen to stay on topic, directing conversation to the original architecture of the chapel.

    Full article, with video:
  10. The Wrong Guy Member

    Guess we were wrong.

    Tom Cruise snapped in Queenstown


    Scientology New Zealand secretary Mike Ferriss said the church had no information about Cruise visiting New Zealand.

    "On several occasions celebrity members of our church have travelled to NZ, but we make no special arrangements for them as we do not involve ourselves in the private lives of our members," Ferriss said.
  11. The Wrong Guy Member

    Tom Cruise visits Auckland Scientology HQ on way out of New Zealand


    A "down to earth" Tom Cruise made a flying visit to the Auckland Church of Scientology as he left New Zealand after a film shoot.

    Cruise visited the church's newly adopted home in a $16m, heritage-listed building in Grafton, Auckland.

    He toured the centre, which opened in January, dressed in a black suit and sunglasses.

    The Top Gun star had been in New Zealand filming for Mission: Impossible 6.

    Church of Scientology spokesperson Mike Ferris said Cruise had visited of his own volition.

    "We don't run his schedule, we don't do anything like that. It's like any person wanting to visit their church community in their own country."

    Ferris described Cruise as a "very down-to-earth person".

    "It was a real privilege to have him here to come and see our building," he said.

    ​Cruise has been involved with Scientology, a religion created by science fiction author L Ron Hubbard, since 1990, and credits it with helping him overcome dyslexia.

    Earlier in the day, Cruise thanked New Zealand for showing him a "great time" during his stay here.

    Cruise, who kept a low profile during his visit, tweeted his thanks to New Zealanders for their hospitality, saying he had a "great time" shooting here.

    Continued at

    Tom Cruise visits Church of Scientology in Auckland

    Tom Cruise spotted visiting Church of Scientology

    Video: Hollywood star Tom Cruise spotted checking out Auckland's Church of Scientology

    Tom Cruise visits $16 million Scientology HQ in Aukland
  12. There are what.....45 culties in the entire country of about 4.5 million people. And half of that population lives in Auckland?

    I love Kiwis but my god....they are just too nice and welcoming. Maybe I'll take a stroll by it when I'm there next.
  13. The Wrong Guy Member


    Confronting Scientology exhibition shut down

    By Melissa Davies, Newshub


    A confronting exhibition set up in a mall by a branch of the Church of Scientology is being closed down earlier than planned.

    Christmas shoppers at Westfield Mall in Manukau may have noticed a free exhibition run by the Citizens Commission on Human Rights (CCHR) over the past four days.

    The group was established by the Church of Scientology, although this link was not made clear in any signage on the shop front. A CCHR spokesman said it was written in the materials given to visitors through the exhibition.

    "We are upfront about that," said Mike Ferriss. "It's in the materials and if people ask, that's fine."

    He also explained to Newshub that the display would shut down this evening, because he conceded some of the imagery was not "family friendly" for Christmas shoppers, but denied that children would have seen pictures of mental health patients strapped to hospital beds.

    Information panels also showed pictures of children who allegedly died from "psychiatric constraints".

    Ferriss was asked whether he felt the mall was an appropriate place for the display.

    "I think any place is appropriate, if it's actually going to get to the public and show them what is actually happening in the field of mental health."

    Material that had been sent out by the group, advertising the exhibition, told Scientologists that it would run until December 29, but Ferriss said there was now no plan to continue over Christmas.

    High-profile scientologist Tom Cruise has described psychiatry as a "quack" field and criticised actress Brooke Shields for taking anti-depressants for postpartum depression.

    The Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists told Newshub they had a policy not to comment on claims made by the CCHR, and as such, did not wish to comment on the exhibition on display in Manukau.

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