The Grand Opening of the Founding Church in the American Capital
IT’S A GIFT FROM THE IAS and bestowed on behalf of every member of the IAS. Of course, their contributions came with full knowledge of what this nation’s capital means to the world.” Mr. David Miscavige, Chairman of the Board Religious Technology Center
October 31, 2009 was a day that will be remembered as an extraordinary moment in Scientology history: the Grand Opening and ribbon-cutting ceremony for the new IAS-sponsored Ideal Organization and Founding Church of Scientology of Washington, DC.
Located just six blocks from the White House in the historic Embassy Building on Embassy Row, it not only serves as the new home of the Founding Church, but completes a triad of addresses in DuPont Circle as it joins the original Founding Church premises on 19th Street NW that now stand as a preservation landmark in honor of LRH and the landmark Fraser Mansion which -will soon serve as the National Office for the Church of Scientology. Leaders from the local community and national government welcomed the Church to its new premises. They spoke of their close relationship with the Church and their strong desire to continue working together with Scientologists in disaster relief and recovery efforts, rehabilitating criminals and creating respect for human rights.
Scientologists were deeply honored to have the Chairman of the Board Religious Technology Center, Mr. David Miscavige, attend the Grand Opening and deliver a personal address. He cited LRH milestones in connection with Washington, DC– from LRH’s distinction as America’s youngest Eagle Scout to his studies at George Washington University and from his authoring of Dianetics: The Original Thesis to his establishment of our first Church of Scientology in 1955.
Next, speaking of all we do to uplift this civilization, Mr. Miscavige detailed the worldwide expansion of the many IAS-sponsored social betterment programs and Fourth Dynamic campaigns. Referring to the fact that IAS grants funded this new Ideal Org, he said, “It’s a gift from the IAS and bestowed on behalf of every member of the IAS. Of course, their contributions came with full knowledge of what this nation’s capital means to the world. So, no, you don’t ‘owe’ every member of the IAS who made this day possible. But, on the other hand, you certainly now ‘owe’ Washington, DC. Which is to say: Instill respect for human rights on the Hill up there or pass The Way to Happiness to your neighbors down the block–and who knows how far the ripples will roll from there.”
Acknowledging our Founder, Mr. Miscavige and the distinguished guests cut the ribbon and officially opened wide the doors. At which point thousands were invited in to see their new Ideal Org firsthand.
[Image captions: Mr. David Miscavige, Chairman of the Board RTC and the Grand Opening guest speakers cut the ribbon, officially opening the new home of the Founding Church of Scientology of Washington, DC. (pp. 36-37.)
(Left) Thousands poured into the org when the doors opened, passing through the multilingual Public Bookstore located right off Reception (top). Many watched videos on one of the IAS-sponsored campaigns in the Public Information Center (above) (p. 39).