The Church of Scientology has faced a barrage of criticism in recent years from former members who made sensational allegations about what goes on behind closed doors. Since being founded by sci-fi writer L. Ron Hubbard in the 1950s, the organization has risen to become one of the most talked-about and controversial religions in the world.
There have been allegations of mistreatment of members, abuse, and harassment of former members who spoke out against the Church. Church leaders have long denied any wrongdoing and put the claims down to spiteful attacks by scorned ex-members.
The Church has used its association with famous faces as a major publicity tool over the years. The most famous face associated with Scientology is Hollywood actor Tom Cruise, who has risen to the upper echelons of the Church. He’s believed to be treated in an almost God-like way by members for his role in supporting the Church over the years.
Leah Remini, the former member who has been the most outspoken, told “The Daily Beast”: “Scientologists are told that Tom Cruise is saving the world single-handedly, so he is considered a deity within Scientology”. Cruise is second to Church leader David Miscavige, “the savior of the free world”.
Remini has also alleged that celebrity members are given special treatment to keep them on board, including being awarded personal assistants. They are paid below minimum wage for their services as labor laws “don’t apply” to religious organizations, which nowadays is around $25 per week.
Leah Remini released a book in 2015 called “Troublemaker: Surviving Hollywood and Scientology”, and has an award-winning TV series titled “Leah Remini: Scientology and the Aftermath”.
Other famous Church members include John Travolta, Kirstie Alley, Greta Van Susteren, and many more.