Clearwater, Florida

Thousands Converge to Mark Scientology Founder’s Birthday and a “Flip of the Switch” for Unrelenting Dissemination

L. Ron Hubbard’s life and legacy honored at spiritual headquarters in Clearwater, Florida, capped by game-changing unveiling of the Scientology Network for religion’s worldwide growth.

For the 6,700 Scientologists and friends from 70 nations gathered on March 10, 2018, in the religion’s spiritual capital of Clearwater, Florida, announcements of three new Churches were most certainly incredible news to cheer about. Add to that powerful highlights of the religion’s humanitarian accomplishments in the last year, and the crowd went wild. And then there were the treasured stories about Founder L. Ron Hubbard’s (LRH) life—and the “oohs” and “wows” rolled through the audience at Clearwater’s Ruth Eckerd Hall.

With all of that, however, the mega news at the 107th L. Ron Hubbard Birthday Celebration was still to come: Announcing the advent of the Scientology TV Network.

Mr. Miscavige addressed the record number of Scientologists gathered in celebration of the exceptional life of L. Ron Hubbard.

And so the evening began, with an electric anticipation and the uproarious greeting for Scientology ecclesiastical leader, Mr. David Miscavige: “Yes, indeed, this Birthday Celebration is like nothing ever seen before… This greatest moment in our history, this night, this hour, this instant when I say: this is Scientology today. And presuming you grasp what we now possess in terms of technical excellence and the resources thereof, well, you can’t deny these are legendary times. Consequently, it’s only fitting we now return to where that legend began.”

Telling that legend is an annual expedition into the past by Mr. Hubbard’s biographer, Mr. Dan Sherman. His account took attendees upon a journey back six decades to the religion’s early years, when Mr. Hubbard was at Saint Hill Manor in East Grinstead, England, researching the mind and spirit.

The stories Mr. Sherman recounted told of peripheral players who nonetheless added important footnotes to the great Scientology epic—such as the craftsman who was integral in the genesis of the very symbol of Scientology. Or, another who under Mr. Hubbard’s direction, executed plans that gave birth to the religious artifact, the E-Meter, that is now the fundamental of Scientology spiritual counseling.

By the close of Mr. Sherman’s presentation, the audience was anticipating news, good news and even greater news. It began with an exclamation point as Mr. Miscavige next underscored the state of Scientology’s growth around the world that, as he declared: “Now spans some 30,000 oceanic miles, from the North Sea, to the Tasman Sea, then back again to the Bay of Biscay.

“Well, such is the purely geographic scope. Especially considering what LRH tells us about an Ideal Church of Scientology, as a place where a new civilization is now underway.”

Three stunning new churches gave exact coordinates for those new civilizations now coming to life with grand openings in Northern Johannesburg, South Africa, on December 23; and Salt Lake City, Utah; and the Silicon Valley, California, back-to-back on February 17 and 18. Those facilities complement 62 other major Scientology Churches that have opened their doors in recent years, and all as the religion’s accelerating growth continues to outpace every previous period combined.

All of which only served to underline the importance of Mr. Hubbard’s Birthday Game, the annual contest for Scientology Churches to gift the Founder with his single wish: Expansion in the name of bettering humankind and realizing its potential.

The game saw Missions, Churches, Advanced Organizations and Continental Offices competing for top honors across six continents and dozens of cities, from Copenhagen, Denmark to Bogotá, Colombia and Sydney, Australia. When all was said and done, the champions claiming their trophies represented: The Ideal Scientology Mission of Baton Rouge, Louisiana; the Ideal Church of Scientology of San Fernando Valley, California; the Ideal Advanced Organization for Europe; and the Ideal Continental Liaison Office for Australasia.

At which point, the evening changed trajectory entirely, as Mr. Miscavige next crowned the celebration with the revelation of just “how” the religion transmits its message to the world: A new Scientology Network whose switch would be flipped on March 12—reaching an initial audience of tens of millions of people in the United States alone on satellite TV, online at Scientology.TV, Apple TV, Fire TV, Roku and on mobile apps.

The announcement comes in the wake of an overwhelming curiosity about the religion, and the new network answers common questions by taking people inside the religion itself. In fact, at the core of the new network is innovative content that will serve as a paradigm shift for religious programming.

To an audience brimming with jubilation and triumph, Mr. Miscavige presented each element of original programming that offers a compelling insight into the lives of Scientologists, the Church as an institution and its various organizations.

He further previewed a behind-the-scenes look at Scientology Media Productions—the historic 5-acre multimedia complex in Hollywood, California. The fully integrated digital studio is like nothing else on Earth and comes complete with three sound stages, 20 editing suites, four music scoring rooms and seven “5.1 Surround Sound” mix rooms. Serving as the audio-visual infrastructure for the new network, it is where all original TV content is produced across 136,000 square feet of production space and all of it fed by 20 international roving correspondent teams across North and South America, Europe, Africa and Australasia.

A standing ovation at the announcement thundered on and on and on, as this finest Birthday Celebration in history came to a close, and a new chapter for the religion opened wide—very wide indeed.