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PR Newswire

An elated crowd hails a ribbon-cutting in the capital city, celebrating Texas freedom on the city's main social corridor, The Drag.

AUSTIN, Texas, Feb. 25, 2024 /PRNewswire/ -- At the crossroads of all things Austin, crowds of Scientologists and guests gathered on a clear Saturday afternoon February 24 and gave an ecstatic Texas welcome to the new Ideal Church of Scientology Austin. The ribbon-cutting, the first in a wave of Grand Openings at the start of 2024, embodied the spirit of unabated growth that has become the hallmark of Scientology today.

Austin's magnificent new Church stands directly across the street from the University of Texas, on The Drag, where as many as 70,000 walk the bustling stretch every day. Starting today, the Church's street-level, floor-to-ceiling windows invite passers-by to come in, look, listen and get a taste of Texas Spiritual Freedom.

"You're Texas big and Texas tough," said Mr. David Miscavige, Chairman of the Board Religious Technology Center. "While before that ribbon falls on your new Church of Scientology, this is a moment to remember what was said long ago by one of your famous Texans—that it was the best land he had ever seen, and there was a world of country to settle. Well, so it is again today. Except your 'line of country' is the human spirit, and you settle it by restoring to people the happiness, love, sincerity and kindness with which they were created."

Just a mile from the state capitol building, the new Ideal Church provides Texas-size facilities to expand the Church's humanitarian activity and influence. All of which promises exemplary drug awareness and prevention for Texas youth, human rights education to generations and countless victories for victims of mental health abuse.

Among the officials and dignitaries joining Mr. Miscavige at the opening event was Vice-President of the University Area Partners Association, Mr. Mike McHone, a committed neighborhood leader for the West Campus area. "For those of you who aren't from Austin, this town is a university town. We work to keep our neighborhood at the front of the pack when it comes to, well, everything," Mr. McHone said.

"And today I'll admit a little Longhorns pride in celebrating another big step in keeping our neighborhood the Best of the Best. Hook 'em Horns!" he told the roaring crowd.

"Each and every one of you should take pride in knowing you have helped make our home what it is today. Your members form the backbone of an ongoing community effort. Which is another way of saying, you have shown an inherent understanding of what our residents need with a passion and care to create a thriving, active community.

"While today, with this Grand Opening, we celebrate the return of a major player to this University area. So, what I should really be saying is, 'Welcome back!'"

Mr. Sam Price, who served nearly 25 years with the Austin Health Department and is now a dedicated Texas drug education advocate in Central Texas, recognized the impact of the Church-sponsored drug awareness program, Drug-Free World. "From the outset, our attitude was, 'Let's educate people.' And we got that Truth About Drugs information out to everyone. That means, thanks to your support, thousands who never had a choice to be educated now have the choice to say, 'I'm going to live drug-free!'

"The world would be a better place if more people had the care and commitment that your Church members do. No doubt about it. And thanks to Drug-Free World, you've given this kid from the south of Austin the opportunity of a lifetime. So, I have one final request: keep doing your good work. You'll never know how many lives you've saved."

Ms. Simone Talma Flowers, Executive Director of Interfaith Action of Central Texas, spoke on the international diversity of Austin's religious community. "Bridging division between different faiths is not simply a 'nice to do,' it's essential," she said. "You have been pillars of devotion and dependency. And upon those pillars, we have now built the largest interfaith movement in all of Central Texas."

Remarking on the new Church's spacious Chapel, Ms. Flowers said, "I have to tell you, we are so excited at the prospect of holding our events right here—front and center in Downtown. This Ideal Org will be a shared space where any and all are welcome, a place for services, talks or meetings for reconciliation. So may it continue to shine as a sanctuary for all faiths for all the decades to come!"

The final guest speaker, Mr. Nelson Linder, serves as President of the Austin NAACP. He recalled that, as a child in Georgia in the late 1950s, he walked to school because there were no buses that served his segregated school. "Like many others, my fight for civil rights is now decades long.

"A just society requires sacrifice and commitment," Mr. Linder said. "In fact, a great man once said, 'Injustice is not something in which any man with power should ever trade.' That was Mr. L. Ron Hubbard. To say such in the crucible of the 1960s shows tremendous courage.

"At that time, just a handful were in the middle, trying to broker peace, and yet there he was. Mr. Hubbard's ideas of forwarding the concept of true justice were both visionary and grand.

"And let's face it, they inspired you all to create a movement not only in Texas, but around the world. That's not just a gift for those who are here. It's a gift for those who aren't even born yet. So, on behalf of the Austin NAACP, thank you, Mr. Hubbard, for being a strong voice in the land.

"With this Grand Opening today, we can now say: Yes, Mr. Hubbard, we are turning your dream into reality. And that is most certainly cause to celebrate."

The new Austin Ideal Org provides the city with an introduction to Dianetics and Scientology, beginning with the Public Information Center. Its displays, containing more than 500 films, present the beliefs and practices of the Scientology religion and the life and legacy of Founder L. Ron Hubbard. The Information Center also offers a detailed overview of the renowned Church-sponsored humanitarian programs—including a worldwide human rights education initiative; far-reaching drug education, prevention and rehabilitation programs; a global network of literacy and learning centers; and the Scientology Volunteer Minister Program, which has become one of the world's largest independent relief forces. The center is open morning to night for visitors to tour at their leisure and return as often as they wish.

The Church's Chapel provides for Scientology congregational gatherings, including Sunday Services, Weddings and Naming Ceremonies—as well as a host of events open to members of all faiths in the name of community collaboration. The new Church further includes multiple seminar rooms and classrooms, in addition to a wing of rooms for Scientology auditing (spiritual counseling).

Ideal Church Organizations (Ideal Orgs) realize the fulfillment of Founder L. Ron Hubbard's vision for the religion. They not only provide the ideal facilities to service Scientologists on their ascent to greater states of spiritual awareness and freedom but are also designed to serve as a home for the entire community and a meeting ground for cooperative efforts to uplift citizens of all denominations.

The Grand Opening of the Ideal Church of Scientology Austin is the first of many new Churches set to mark an expansive 2024 for the religion. All told, the Church has opened new Ideal Church Organizations across the United States, including New York CityHarlemBuffaloWashington, D.C.AtlantaTampaOrlandoMiamiNashvilleCincinnatiColumbusDetroitTwin CitiesKansas CityDallasDenverSalt Lake CityPhoenixLas VegasPortland and Seattle. And in California alone, at SacramentoSan FranciscoLos GatosSan JoseSilicon ValleyVenturaSan Fernando ValleyPasadenaLos AngelesInglewoodOrange County and San Diego.

The unprecedented expansion of Scientology is further represented by the opening of new Ideal Organizations in major cities all over the globe, including LondonBirmingham and Dublin in the British Isles; throughout Europe in BrusselsRomeMilanPadovaMadridBerlinHamburgStuttgartCopenhagenMalmöAmsterdamBasel and Budapest; in the Middle East at Tel Aviv; all along the Pacific Rim at TokyoKaohsiungAucklandSydneyMelbourne and Perth; in South Africa at Johannesburg and Pretoria; more in Canada at Québec and Cambridge; and in the Latin American capitals of Mexico City and Bogotá.

For a complete list of Ideal Churches of Scientology, visit

To disseminate Scientology's message still further and answer the overwhelming interest about the religion, the Church launched its own satellite TV channel, Scientology Network, on DIRECTV Channel 320 which also live streams on, as well as on multiple platforms in 17 languages across 24 time zones.

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SOURCE Church of Scientology International

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