Free News Articles, Global Aid and Disaster Relief, Religion and Churches

Scientology Assist Team Brings Help to Their Country in Its Time of Need

KARACHI, Pakistan -- In a country as prone to cataclysm and disaster as Pakistan, some might say there is not much you can count on except bad news. But Perwaiz Hasan and the Scientology Assist Team are the exception to that rule.

The team has been providing relief in the wake of disasters for more than a decade and responded immediately to this year's floods that left a third of the country under water.

They have visited towns rarely mentioned in Western news: In Bhittai and Qasimabad, they brought food and clothing to some 500 people stranded by the flood. They brought relief to the towns of Zhob, Dadu, and Dera Ismail Khan. They have traveled across the provinces of Punjab and Sindh.

"We really felt honored to visit the most neglected province, Baluchistan," said Perwaiz Hasan, who leads Pakistan's Scientology Assist Team. The team was warned that the area was unsafe. "But it wasn't true," said Hasan. "The people in that area were very friendly and welcoming, and they were really happy we came."

With flooding comes a host of medical complications.

"Standing water is an ideal breeding ground for mosquitoes, which are currently spreading malaria and dengue fever in Pakistan," said Richard Brennan, regional emergency director for the eastern Mediterranean region at the World Health Organization. "Respiratory illnesses are rampant. And toxic floodwaters have caused skin infections and scabies."

The Scientology Assist Team includes a corps of medical doctors and nurses who provide medical camps to care for those in need.

After addressing immediate physical needs, the Pakistan Volunteer Assist Team provides Scientology assists-techniques developed by humanitarian and Scientology Founder L. Ron Hubbard that address the emotional and spiritual factors in stress and trauma. And they share the Scientology Tools for Life, a series of online films and courses that provide skills to help people overcome difficulties and better their circumstances.

For more than a decade, Perwaiz Hasan and his team have been responding to disasters in Pakistan including monsoon-driven floods and the 7.5 earthquake of 2015. His team members have also deployed to disasters abroad, including the Nepal earthquake of 2015 and a tsunami and volcano in Jakarta in 2018.

In 2012, the International Association of Scientologists awarded Hasan the Freedom Medal, presented to Scientologists for stellar accomplishments in forwarding the dignity and freedom of all humankind, thus furthering the Church's humanitarian objectives.

The Church of Scientology Volunteer Ministers program is a religious social service created in the mid-1970s by Scientology Founder L. Ron Hubbard. It constitutes one of the world's largest independent relief forces. Scientology ecclesiastical leader Mr. David Miscavige, calling on Scientologists to use what they know to redouble their efforts to aid their fellow man, has inspired tremendous growth in the Volunteer Ministers movement.

A Volunteer Minister's mandate is to be "a person who helps his fellow man on a volunteer basis by restoring purpose, truth and spiritual values to the lives of others." Their creed: "A Volunteer Minister does not shut his eyes to the pain, evil and injustice of existence. Rather, he is trained to handle these things and help others achieve relief from them and new personal strength as well."

Their motto is no matter the circumstances, "Something can be done about it."

For more information on the technology used by the Volunteer Minister, watch Scientology Tools for Life on the Scientology Network at DIRECTV 320 or at www.Scientology.tv.

LEARN MORE:

https://www.scientologynews.org/press-releases/

https://www.scientology.tv/films/scientology-principles/tools-for-life.html

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Honoring a Scientology Volunteer Minister Who is Changing the Face of Uganda

WANGA PARISH, Uganda -- International Volunteer Day December 5 was set aside by the United Nations to celebrate positive change through volunteerism. And a stellar example of the change a team of volunteers can achieve is the work of the Volunteer Ministers of Wanga Parish, Uganda, says the Church of Scientology International.

Martin Wamatsu had a dream: to transform Wanga Parish, the village of his birth, from a community struggling in poverty to one that is self-sustaining and providing a decent future for all who live there.

When he was introduced to the Scientology Volunteer Ministers' Tools for Life Courses online, he realized this was the technology he needed to turn his dream into reality. Understanding the basics of communication, organization and planning, he now knew how to set goals and accomplish them. Wamatsu and his family returned to the village, met with village elders, and gained their agreement to carry out a series of programs to achieve this goal.

Wamatsu reached out to a Scientologist over the internet who was as excited about his ideas and plans as he was, and she took on raising funds for the project.

As a school principal, one of Wamatsu's first projects was to provide a future for 70 destitute village orphans. He and his team opened an orphanage, and these children are now all in school. The children now have the energy to learn and take part in orphanage projects. And once the children harvest their first crop of sweet potatoes and rice, the orphanage will be self-sustaining.

Another 25 destitute village children have received the same kind of help and have joined their orphaned friends in school. Funds are nearly in place for the remaining 45 village children to also join them at the school, which will accomplish one of Wamatsu's goals: universal education for all village children.

During the 84-week COVID lockdown in Uganda, most people had to resort to eating their seeds to survive. With the help of his online patron, Wamatsu has now seen to the purchase of seeds, and the village has planted 15 acres of rice, and fields of sweet potatoes and cassava. Once these harvests are gathered, they will have enough to feed the village, plant for the next season and sell or trade produce to nearby villages.

The village and six other villages nearby now have pure, clean drinking water. And they are raising funds to open a medical clinic with a nurse who is also a trained Scientology Volunteer Minister.

Wamatsu has trained his entire village and the leaders of 24 nearby villages on the Scientology Tools for Life. And they used these tools to organize themselves to work as a team to accomplish targets. They are well on their way to making Wanga a sustainable village that can serve as a model where nearby leaders can gain practical experience and return to their villages to create a sustainable region and beyond.

The Church of Scientology Volunteer Ministers program is a religious social service created in the mid-1970s by Scientology Founder L. Ron Hubbard. It constitutes one of the world's largest independent relief forces. Scientology ecclesiastical leader Mr. David Miscavige, calling on Scientologists to use what they know to redouble their efforts to aid their fellow man, has inspired tremendous growth in the Volunteer Ministers movement.

A Volunteer Minister's mandate is to be "a person who helps his fellow man on a volunteer basis by restoring purpose, truth and spiritual values to the lives of others." Their creed: "A Volunteer Minister does not shut his eyes to the pain, evil and injustice of existence. Rather, he is trained to handle these things and help others achieve relief from them and new personal strength as well."

Their motto is no matter the circumstances, "Something can be done about it."

For more information on the technology used by the Volunteer Minister, watch films on the Scientology Tools for Life on the Scientology Network at DIRECTV 320 or at https://www.scientology.tv/.

LEARN MORE:

https://www.scientologynews.org/press-releases/

https://www.scientology.tv/films/scientology-principles/tools-for-life.html

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Scientology Churches Organize Volunteers to Clean Up the Hollywood Christmas Parade Route

HOLLYWOOD, Calif. -- Scientology Churches in Los Angeles organize their annual parade route cleanup to make Hollywood shine for the thousands of visitors expected to line the streets of Hollywood for the 90th annual Christmas Parade. Anyone wishing to help make the parade special for paradegoers and those watching on TV is invited to join a team of energetic Angelenos Saturday, November 26, who will be making Hollywood beautiful while having a lot of fun.

Each year, Los Angeles Scientologists organize this pre-parade cleanup. But this year's promises to be unique. Not only will they be making Hollywood and Sunset Boulevards litter-free, they will also be upgrading the parade route by cleaning windows and painting out graffiti. And to help everyone join in the holiday spirit, a team of carolers has promised to come along.

Volunteers should arrive at 9 a.m. at the Association for Better Living and Education (ABLE) at 7065 Hollywood Blvd at 9 a.m., for complimentary coffee and donuts, and to collect their supplies. After the cleanup, they return at noon for pizza and sandwiches provided by local businesses that support the initiative.

The cleanup is cosponsored by The Way to Happiness Foundation, named for author, humanitarian and Scientology Founder L. Ron Hubbard's common-sense moral code. The Way to Happiness promotes universal values adopted by millions of people of all faiths around the world. Among the 21 precepts are two particularly appropriate for such a project: Set a Good Example, and Safeguard and Improve Your Environment, which points out:

"Care of the planet begins in one's own front yard. It extends through the area one travels to get to school or work. It covers such places as where one picnics or goes on vacation. The litter which messes up the terrain and water supply, the dead brush which invites fire, these are things one need not contribute to and which, in otherwise idle moments, one can do something about."

Not only does a cleanup raise the pride of those living and working in a neighborhood, it has also been found to be a deterrent to crime. According to a study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences from the University of Pennsylvania and other institutions, "neighborhoods where vacant lots were cleaned up experienced a 29 percent reduction in gun violence, 22 percent decrease in burglaries, and 30 percent drop in nuisances like noise complaints and illegal dumping.

"Residents living near those same spaces also reported feeling much safer post-remediation, with 58 percent having fewer security concerns when leaving their homes and more than three-quarters saying they significantly increased use of their outside spaces for relaxing and socializing."

Hollywood cleanup volunteers hand out copies of The Way to Happiness after the cleanup and place them in shops for their customers to promote simple, common-sense values anyone may use to make their neighborhood safer and more welcoming.

In addition to the annual Hollywood Christmas Parade activity, a partnership between the Church of Scientology, The Way to Happiness Foundation and the Los Angeles Police Department carries out monthly cleanups to keep Hollywood beautiful. The Los Angeles Churches of Scientology also helped organize the Faith and Blue neighborhood cleanup in October 2022, where more than 50 local businesses, nonprofits and faith-based organizations and some 460 volunteers cleaned 170 city blocks and beautified 200 storefronts under the banner "Unity in the Community."

For more information on humanitarian initiatives sponsored by the Church of Scientology, visit a new interactive timeline on the Scientology website.

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https://www.scientologynews.org/press-releases/

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Celebrate World Television Day With a Visit to the Scientology Network

HOLLYWOOD, Calif. -- Curious about Scientology? In honor of World Television Day November 21, with the UN noting the increasing impact of the medium on the lives of people everywhere, the Church of Scientology welcomes viewers to satisfy their curiosity about Scientology and learn the truth about the world's youngest major religion.

Every six seconds someone searches the question "What is Scientology?" And the Scientology Network answers this question by taking viewers behind the scenes to Scientology Churches on six continents, Church management, its publication and dissemination facilities, and humanitarian outreach centers and programs.

The network launched in March 2018 with a special introduction by Scientology ecclesiastical leader Mr. David Miscavige.

"You've probably heard of Scientology," said Mr. Miscavige from the atrium of the Church of Scientology spiritual headquarters in Florida. "There's a lot of talk about us. And we get it. People are curious. Well, we want to answer your questions, because, frankly, whatever you've heard, if you haven't heard it from us, I can assure you, we are not what you expect.

"So, while I could tell you Scientology is new, our approach is new, our answers are new, and that Scientology is not just something you believe in, it's something you do, well, I'm sure you would much rather see for yourself. And that's what the Scientology Network is all about. To show you inside Scientology, who we are, what Scientology is, and what Scientology can do."

The Network debuted, airing 24/7 in 17 languages on DIRECTV channel 320, with an array of original series, also available at Scientology.tv, and streaming through mobile apps and via the Roku, Amazon Fire and Apple TV platforms:

* Inside Scientology -- a behind-the-scenes look at the religion-its international spiritual headquarters and cutting-edge publishing houses, what happens on a typical day at a Church of Scientology, and the meticulous, painstaking efforts to preserve 75 million words of Founder L. Ron Hubbard's religious writings and recordings for future generations

* Meet a Scientologist -- an in-depth look into the lives of individual Scientologists from the frontiers of modern art, science, sports, entertainment and many other professions and interests

* I am a Scientologist -- featuring hundreds of Scientologists from every corner of the world and every imaginable occupation, giving personal accounts of how their lives have been enriched by the religion

* Voices for Humanity -- brief documentaries introducing change-makers of all faiths, cultures and nations as they extend help to their communities through Scientology-sponsored humanitarian programs

* Destination: Scientology -- bringing viewers inside Scientology Churches, showcasing the diversity of the Churches and the cooperation that weaves every Church of Scientology into the local community fabric

* L. Ron Hubbard: In His Own Voice -- a unique series chronicling L. Ron Hubbard through autobiographical vignettes in his own words and in his own voice. Scientology is the only major religion with the voice of its Founder intact, recorded in public lectures delivered over the course of a quarter-century.

* L. Ron Hubbard Library Presents -- with films exploring the beliefs and practices of the Scientology religion through the groundbreaking writings of its Founder.

* Citizens Commission on Human Rights -- an ongoing investigative series featuring the global advocacy organization taking on powerful, well-funded psychiatric interest groups to educate the public on abuses of psychiatry. These documentaries expose the truth about the marketing of psychotropic prescriptions, the dangers of those drugs and the industry's terrifying history

The second season saw the addition of:

* Documentary Showcase -- because fundamental to Scientology is its humanitarian mission that extends to some 200 nations with programs for human rights, human decency, literacy, morality, drug prevention and disaster relief. For this reason, the Scientology Network provides a platform for independent filmmakers who embrace a vision of building a better world.

The network also airs films on the beliefs and practices of the religion, answering questions about its philosophy and technology. These include:

* Scientology Principles -- questions are answered about the most basic tenets of Scientology, explaining the fundamental beliefs and core truths of the religion.

* Scientology: The Fundamentals of Thought -- presenting the basic theory of Scientology from the book of the same title-highlighting discoveries that enhance every aspect of life, the mind and the spirit.

* The Problems of Work: Scientology Applied to the Workaday World -- with the technology to resolve problems to not only bring stability to the workplace but to return joy to life itself.

* Scientology: Tools for Life -- comprising 19 short films drawn from The Scientology Handbook, providing solutions to challenges in a wide array of areas such as marriage, raising children, education and communication. The program also presents free online courses corresponding to each chapter of The Scientology Handbook.

* The Way to Happiness -- L. Ron Hubbard's moral code and common-sense guide to living, universally applied to anyone regardless of religion or cultural background. Brought to life on film, The Way to Happiness is the moral code Scientologists and millions of others abide by each day. The book has been translated into 115 languages and distributed to more than 120 million people worldwide.

* 21 short films titled "Common Sense for Life" depicting the precepts of The Way to Happiness.

With all content broadcast and streaming in 17 languages and viewed in 240 countries, what better time than on World Television Day to find real answers to the question "What is Scientology?" And benefit from the answers.

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https://www.scientology.tv

https://www.scientologynews.org/press-releases/

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Holiday Magic and Fun at the Church of Scientology Lighting Ceremony

HOLLYWOOD, Calif. -- The family fun begins on Saturday, Nov. 19, 2022, when Santa touches down in East Hollywood at the Church of Scientology on L. Ron Hubbard Way. No matter what weather Los Angeles meteorologists predict next weekend, snow will be falling in East Hollywood when community leaders flip the switch on two blocks of holiday lights.

Local families can count on a traditional holiday celebration with all the trimmings. The fun begins at 3 p.m. Saturday, November 19, and continues until 9 p.m.

Volunteers contributed more than 200 hours to make the lighting festival a memorable experience for East Hollywood families, in keeping with their campaign to "Keep Hollywood Beautiful."

Bring the entire family to welcome Santa and enjoy the complimentary hot cocoa, cookie decorating, and lots of other winter fun.

The festival also launches the Church of Scientology Los Angeles's annual Winter Street Fair. L. Ron Hubbard Way will be transformed into a wonderland, with ice skating and snow slides for the kids. There will be music, food, holiday treats and photos with Santa throughout the holiday season.

Los Angeles Scientology Churches serve as hubs for religious organizations, like-minded groups, and community leaders all over the Southland, welcoming all cultures, all religions and all nationalities to create a positive Los Angeles.

The Church of Scientology Los Angeles, dedicated by Scientology ecclesiastical leader Mr. David Miscavige in 2010, is featured in an episode of Inside Scientology on the Scientology Network, available on DIRECTV channel 320 and streaming at Scientology.tv, through mobile apps and via the Roku, Amazon Fire and Apple TV platforms. For more information, visit the website of the Church of Scientology Los Angeles or the new interactive timeline at Scientology.org/our-help-is-yours/.

LEARN MORE:

https://www.scientology.org/our-help-is-yours/

https://www.scientology-losangeles.org

https://www.scientologynews.org/press-releases/

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Curious About Scientology, Hundreds Learned More on Copenhagen Culture Night

COPENHAGEN, Denmark -- The Church of Scientology Denmark was packed with visitors wishing to learn more about the Scientology religion at the annual "Kulturnatten."

Culture Night in Copenhagen is a unique festival where the Church of Scientology of Denmark is among the more than 250 museums, theatres, libraries, churches, ministries and parks throughout the city that welcome the public to experience the many aspects of the city's cultural life. In fact, it is one of Copenhagen's most well-attended cultural events in a city renowned for its creativity, craftsmanship and culture.

Scientology staff and volunteers toured hundreds of visitors who stopped by to find out more about the world's youngest major religion. And they were not disappointed.

In launching the Scientology television network in 2018, Scientology ecclesiastical leader Mr. David Miscavige said, "There's a lot of talk about us. And we get it. People are curious. Well, we want to answer your questions, because, frankly, whatever you've heard, if you haven't heard it from us, I can assure you, we are not what you expect," a statement confirmed over and over again that October night.

Visitors were encouraged to ask questions, which were answered by the tour guides and the video presentations in the Scientology Information Center just off the entrance to the Church.

It was as much fun for the hosts as for those touring.

"I must have toured 100 people," said one of the volunteers, "and they all asked relevant and interested questions." Comments like "I would really like to know what Scientology actually is," were frequent.

One of the most popular features was the video display on the life and work of Scientology Founder L. Ron Hubbard. Another was the demonstration of the E-meter, a device used by a Scientology minister or a Scientology minister-in-training to help the individual locate and confront areas of spiritual upset. People lined up for a demonstration of how the meter worked and were often amazed at how accurately it pinpointed areas that were troubling them in life.

The Church of Scientology Denmark opened its doors in 2017, when Mr. Miscavige dedicated the building in the heart of the city.

Those who missed visiting on Culture Night are invited to drop by any time at Nytorv 11. Or watch an episode of Destination Scientology about the Church of Scientology Denmark.

This Church, like all Scientology Churches, is open every day of the year. And all are welcome to stop in for a tour of the Scientology Information Center, to ask questions, or for a free personality test or an introductory film or course.

The Church of Scientology Denmark is designed to provide ideal facilities for Scientologists on their ascent to higher states of spiritual freedom and to serve as a home for the entire community -- a meeting ground of cooperative effort to uplift people of all denominations.

LEARN MORE:

https://www.scientology.org/our-help-is-yours/

https://en.scientology-denmark.org/

https://www.scientologynews.org/press-releases/

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Scientology Church Honors and Celebrates the Indigenous Michoacán Culture

HOLLYWOOD, Calif. -- East Hollywood's L. Ron Hubbard Way was transformed into a street festival in honor of the Day of the Dead and the traditions and culture of the indigenous people of the Mexican State of Michoacán. More than a thousand guests filled the street for the celebration, a Michoacán tradition that honors the ancestors and all who have passed away. It was also an affirmation of the culture of the Purépecha, an indigenous people of Michoacán, hosted by the Monarca Purépecha Association and the Church of Scientology Los Angeles.

Artisans displayed handicrafts, from jewelry to traditional clothing, in a street fair along both sides of the street. They set up next to food stalls where tantalizing aromas invited visitors to sample some of the region's favorite foods.

There was churipo, a spicey stew prepared with chunks of beef, vegetables and chilis. And pozole, a dish made from hominy and meat, often seasoned and garnished with shredded lettuce or cabbage, chili peppers, onion, garlic, radishes, avocado, salsa or limes. There were also tamales and tacos dorados, with ingredients tightly rolled up in tortillas and fried in oil. And to top it off, a steaming cup of chocolate atole, made with Mexican chocolate, water, and milk, spiced with cinnamon sticks and anise, sweetened with piloncillo, a raw form of pure cane sugar, and thickened with corn flour.

Along the street were ofrendas, flowered altars built on the Day of the Dead to honor those who have passed. They are usually made of marigolds, which blossom at this time of the year in Michoacán, and contain photos and other memorabilia to welcome those who have died and celebrate their lives.

Octavio Chavez Aguirre, Mayor of Lagunillas in the state of Michoacán, commissioned a custom artisanal brass plate and had it presented to the Church of Scientology in recognition of Scientology Founder L. Ron Hubbard and his support of the customs, traditions and rights of people of all cultures.

While this celebration was taking place on L. Ron Hubbard Way, the Guatemalan community was also marking the Day of the Dead in a commemoration reflecting their own unique culture in an event space set up in front of the Church of Scientology Los Angeles.

Los Angeles Scientology Churches serve as hubs for religious organizations, like-minded groups and community leaders all over the Southland, welcoming all cultures, all religions and all nationalities to create a positive Los Angeles.

The Church of Scientology Los Angeles, dedicated by Scientology ecclesiastical leader Mr. David Miscavige in 2010, is featured in an episode of Inside Scientology on the Scientology Network, available on DIRECTV channel 320 and streaming at Scientology.tv, through mobile apps and via the Roku, Amazon Fire and Apple TV platforms.

For more information, visit the website of the Church of Scientology Los Angeles or the new interactive timeline at Scientology.org/our-help-is-yours/.

LEARN MORE:

https://www.scientology.org/our-help-is-yours/

https://www.scientology-losangeles.org

https://www.scientologynews.org/press-releases/

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Join the Drug-Free Heroes and Help Protect Youth from Drug Overdose

LOS ANGELES, Calif. -- Church of Scientology Los Angeles hosts the second annual National Red Ribbon Week Drug-Free Heroes Awards to help end the deadly crisis that is threatening the lives of L.A. kids. Los Angeles was rocked in September by the death of a 15-year-old student who died in school after taking a single pill laced with fentanyl. She was the seventh L.A. teenager to overdose on fentanyl in the previous 30 days.

Can anything be done to prevent such tragedies? Foundation for a Drug-Free World says "Yes." That is why the Church of Scientology and the L.A.-based Strike Out Against Drugs nonprofit joined forces to hold their 2nd annual Drug-Free Heroes Awards Gala at the Church of Scientology Los Angeles in celebration of National Red Ribbon Week.

Event keynote speaker and awardee Mr. Henry Lozano is an example of what one man or woman can do to reverse this catastrophe. For decades, countless children's lives have been saved because of his work.

Lozano is the founder of National Red Ribbon week, the nation's oldest and largest drug prevention awareness program. He also served as director of USA Freedom Corps under President George W. Bush, has held the position of director of Los Angeles County Teen Challenge and Urban Ministries Initiative since 2011, and is active in Californians for Drug-Free Youth and Points of Light Foundation.

National Red Ribbon Week honors the life and sacrifice of Enrique (Kiki) S. Camarena, a Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) agent working undercover in the 1980s to close the pipeline of deadly drugs into the U.S. from Mexico. His operation was compromised and in February 1985, Camarena was kidnapped. A month later, his body was found.

Lozano, a high school friend of Camarena, launched Camarena Clubs in their hometown of Calexico, California, in coordination with Congressman Duncan Hunter. Hundreds of club members wore red ribbons and pledged to lead drug-free lives to honor the sacrifices made by Camarena and others. In 1988, the campaign gained national prominence when President and Mrs. Ronald Reagan agreed to serve as honorary chairpersons.

Each year, during the last week in October, more than 80 million young people and adults show their commitment to healthy, drug-free living while wearing or displaying the Red Ribbon.

Betsy Davis, who coordinates the Drug-Free World Foundation's Los Angeles chapter, showed those attending how simple it is for anyone to take effective action to combat this deadly crisis.

The Foundation's Truth About Drug materials communicate the cold, hard truth about what drugs are and what they do in youth-friendly booklets and videos. The Truth About Drugs educator's manual enables anyone to provide fact-based drug education.

Cohosting the event was David Sanchez, founder of the L.A. nonprofit Strike Out Against Drugs. Since 2014, his organization has visited more than a hundred communities throughout Los Angeles and Southern California spreading the truth about drugs, reaching some 1.5 million people with an anti-drug message and changing the lives of countless kids. A documentary on his work and accomplishments is featured as an episode of Voices for Humanity on the Scientology Network.

Twelve new Drug-Free Heroes were awarded for their dedication and work to creating a Drug-Free Los Angeles and beyond. These included Beacon of Hope Sober Living cofounder Nick Salvato; Grace Sierra, Los Angeles-based Vice Consul of Honduras; and Alejandro Jose Letona Alvarado, Consul General of El Salvador and his staff.

Mr. Lozano presented Anna Grace Zaucha with the prestigious Gold Medal Presidential Volunteer Award including a medallion, certificate of achievement and a letter signed by President Biden in honor of her outstanding volunteer work to help youth remain drug-free.

The Church of Scientology and Scientologists support Foundation for a Drug-Free World, making it possible to provide the materials free of charge to teachers, community groups, churches, and anyone wishing to educate others on the facts behind drugs and addiction.

After extensive research on the effects of drugs, Scientology Founder L. Ron Hubbard wrote, "Research has demonstrated that the single most destructive element present in our current culture is drugs."

The Church of Scientology Los Angeles is designed to provide ideal facilities for Scientologists on their ascent to higher states of spiritual freedom and to serve as a home for the entire community -- a meeting ground of cooperative effort to uplift people of all denominations. The Church was dedicated by Scientology ecclesiastical leader Mr. David Miscavige in 2010.

The Church of Scientology Los Angeles is featured in an episode of Inside Scientology on the Scientology Network, available on DIRECTV channel 320 and streaming at Scientology.tv, through mobile apps and via the Roku, Amazon Fire and Apple TV platforms.

For more information, visit the website of the Church of Scientology Los Angeles or the new interactive timeline at Scientology.org/our-help-is-yours/.

LEARN MORE:

https://www.scientology.org/our-help-is-yours/

https://www.scientology-losangeles.org

https://www.drugfreeworld.org

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Hurricane Ian is Still a Disaster for Many Florida Families

FORT MYERS BEACH, Fla. -- Scientology Volunteer Ministers continue their disaster response in the aftermath of Hurricane Ian where recovery is far from over for many affected by the storm. The devastation they encounter is still so overwhelming that one of the volunteers describes how they have to go about helping those in areas hardest hit by the storm.

"It honestly starts with you have to pick up that first piece of debris," she told a CBS Miami TV correspondent covering the work that continues in Fort Myers Beach and nearby islands. "When you're confronted with this much confusion, you have to pick up one piece of debris and just keep going."

The Scientology Volunteer Minister pulled a photo binder and a framed photo out of the rubble of a home. "We're doing our best to find the owners," she said. "Sometimes the neighbors know, sometimes they don't. This was from somebody's home, this was inside somebody's house. It can be kind of emotional sometimes. Some of them are halfway okay. I don't know how they really survived," she says, cleaning off a framed photo that, apart from being completely covered in dried mud, looks otherwise unharmed.

Another team of Volunteer Ministers is distributing food, water and hygiene supplies to local households, helping families survive the economic challenges made worse by the hurricane. As one Fort Myers Beach resident put it, "It is hard enough at this time to have a baby. I can't really afford to pay for all the things I need. Your supplies will make such a difference."

A local couple was wary at first. There's been looting and other problems. However, the Volunteer Ministers seemed different they said, "And we felt like we could trust them. They had the brightest smiles. We've been waking up every morning to this devastation and these guys are just the bright part of our day. People keep coming to me and saying where did you find these guys?"

Another resident told them, "Now that you're here, I'm not overwhelmed anymore. I'm going to be able to survive this and put everything in my life back together. People helping people is the silver lining of the whole disaster."

Whether serving in their communities or on the other side of the world, the motto of the Scientology Volunteer Minister is "Something can be done about it." The program, created by Scientology Founder L. Ron Hubbard in the mid-1970s, is sponsored by the Church of Scientology International as a religious social service and constitutes one of the world's most significant independent relief forces.

The Volunteer Minister "helps his fellow man on a volunteer basis by restoring purpose, truth and spiritual values to the lives of others."

Tampa Bay Volunteer Ministers earned their reputation as "Hurricane Heroes" with an award from the Governor of Florida after their response to Hurricane Charlie in 2004: "This certificate is presented to Scientology Volunteer Ministers of Tampa Bay Hurricane Heroes, in recognition of exemplary efforts that not only benefit your local community but also lend truth to the belief that all citizens of Florida can make a difference in the lives of those they serve."

They have continued to serve, responding to Hurricanes Rita and Katrina in 2005 and every local hurricane since, most recently Irma in 2017, Michael and Florence in 2018, as well as Hurricane Harvey in Texas in 2017, Maria in Puerto Rico in 2018, and Dorian in the Bahamas in 2019.

In June 2016, Scientology ecclesiastical leader Mr. David Miscavige dedicated the center for the Scientology Volunteer Ministers of Florida, along with a Scientology information center and six other humanitarian centers in downtown Clearwater. He said, "In times of disaster, whether affecting whole populations or a single household, our Volunteer Ministers prove on a daily basis that 'something can be done about it.' We do not discriminate. We do not judge. All we care to do is help. And, as demonstrated time and again, we deliver that help anywhere and everywhere."

For more information on the technology used by the Volunteer Minister in confronting and handling disasters, watch Scientology Tools for Life on the Scientology Network at DIRECTV 320 or at www.Scientology.tv.

LEARN MORE:

https://www.scientology.org/our-help-is-yours/

https://www.volunteerministers.org

https://www.scientologynews.org/press-releases/

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Free News Articles, Religion and Churches

Day of the Dead Festival at the Church of Scientology Honors Ancestors

HOLLYWOOD, Calif. -- Members of the Los Angeles Guatemala community gathered at the Church of Scientology Los Angeles this weekend for a ceremony and Fiambre -- a 500-year-old Guatemalan custom in which families join in creating a huge platter of food that is then shared by all. It is held each year as part of the observance of the Day of the Dead to remember and celebrate the lives of loved ones who have passed away.

This year's Fiambre weighed 900 pounds and is thought to be the largest ever created outside the borders of Guatemala. It included 80 Ingredients from a variety of meats and seafood to vegetables, fruits, nuts, legumes, spices, juice, and an oil and vinegar dressing. It was followed by a traditional Guatemalan dessert made of ayote, a winter squash native to Guatemala, flavored with cinnamon and a cane sugar product called panela.

Los Angeles County is home to more than 200,000 Guatemalans making it the largest Guatemalan community in the U.S. -- a community that has grown more than 25 percent over the past decade.

Guatemalan-American community leaders believe in the importance of promoting the traditions, values and culture of the land of their ancestors some 2,700 miles away.

With entire generations growing up having little contact with their roots, a traditional Guatemalan Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) celebration is one way to preserve these customs and keep the culture alive. Organizers believe that sharing the community's cultural heritage is vital to preserve the children's sense of identity and instill unity and national pride.

While families created the magnificent Fiambre, mural artist Oscar de Salcaja created a chalk painting in the Church of Scientology parking lot celebrating the culture of Guatemala.

"Thank you to the Church of Scientology for providing a place to keep our country's traditions alive," said Walter Batres, leader of the Guatemalan Migrants Network. "We want to preserve our heritage here in the United States and pass it down to our children. This is the second year we have been able to hold our Fiambre here at your Church and we are grateful for this."

The Church of Scientology has partnered with the Guatemalan community since the 1990s to provide tools to improve the quality of life and the future of Guatemalans in their homeland and Los Angeles.

Working together on food drives, the Church of Scientology Los Angeles and the Guatemalan Chamber of Commerce helped thousands of local families overcome food insecurity during the pandemic.

Those attending the Fiambre were invited to return for the Church's annual Community Holiday Lighting Ceremony Saturday, November 19, to help "flip the switch" on two city blocks of holiday lights and stay for the hot cocoa, live music, and winter-themed family fun.

Los Angeles Scientology Churches serve as hubs for religious organizations, like-minded groups and community leaders all over the Southland, welcoming all cultures, all religions and all nationalities to create a positive Los Angeles.

The Church of Scientology Los Angeles, dedicated by Scientology ecclesiastical leader Mr. David Miscavige in 2010, is featured in an episode of Inside Scientology on the Scientology Network, available on DIRECTV channel 320 and streaming at Scientology.tv, through mobile apps and via the Roku, Amazon Fire and Apple TV platforms.

For more information, visit the website of the Church of Scientology Los Angeles or the new interactive timeline at Scientology.org/our-help-is-yours/.

LEARN MORE:

https://www.scientology.org/our-help-is-yours/

https://www.scientology-losangeles.org

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VIDEO: https://youtu.be/B0xMnowNCYo

Related link: https://www.scientology.org/

This news story was published by the Neotrope® News Network - all rights reserved. ID:NEO2022