The following day, Sunday, March 13, thousands of Scientologists next gathered for a Grand Opening ceremony to dedicate the Church of Scientology of Tampa in its new home, the landmark Ybor Square. The new Tampa Church was made necessary by a fourfold growth in Tampa’s Scientology congregation over the past decade.
Saturday, August 18, 2012
Shannon Edge has served as director of the Neighborhood and Community Relations Office of the City of Tampa since 2003. Her office works with Tampa neighborhood and civic associations and provides a liaison between residents and city government, helping people resolve issues, find information and connect with city agencies that offer the services they need.
Maria Asuncion Lopez is president of the Hispanic Alliance of Tampa Bay and founder and president of Voz y Acción de Puerto Rico, a nonprofit organization established to improve community interaction. Maria also heads LPNet—the Latino Professionals Network—which creates career, educational and social opportunities for Hispanic professionals.
Sam Mobley, president of the Eastern Heights Neighborhood Association, secured a Hillsborough County neighborhood grant to upgrade community facilities and regularly leads anti-drug marches through East Tampa to bring police attention to suspected drug dealers, making the neighborhood safe for local families and unsafe for criminals.
Ybor City historian Dr. Wallace Reyes conducts tours of local historic buildings, thus helping to preserve the heritage of the city by educating residents and visitors on the history of the region.
Pastor Essie Sims, Senior Pastor of Telling the Truth Ministries, is chairman of East Tampa Community Revitalization Partnership, which provides activities and opportunities for East Tampa youth such as midnight basketball and dances through the East Tampa Have a Safe Summer events program. His work with the National Football League Youth Education Town (NFL YET)—an educational and recreational center operated by the Boys and Girls Club of America on behalf of the National Football League—provides activities and opportunities for East Tampa youth.
During the awards presentation and throughout the day, the Church of Scientology Tampa introduced those attending the open house to The Way to Happiness, a nonreligious moral code written by L. Ron Hubbard and based entirely on common sense. The booklet and brief informational videos that illustrate its precepts provide a roadmap to a happier life through compassion and understanding, virtues essential to accomplishing the purpose of International Day of Friendship—to foster friendship between peoples, countries, cultures and individuals to inspire peace efforts and build bridges between communities.
To learn more about the Church of Scientology Tampa, visit their website at
Scientology - Find out
Monday, April 09, 2012
Wednesday, September 14, 2011
Tuesday, September 13, 2011
The event, which raised funds for the Sunscreen Film Festival, began with a catered dessert reception that included New York-style cheesecake pops, red velvet cupcakes, dark and white chocolate fountains and more. These treats were prepared by the Fort Harrison’s gold-medal winning chefs.
Lisa Mansell, the Community Affairs Director for the Church of Scientology welcomed the audience, saying “Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard once wrote that “A culture is only as great as its dreams, and its dreams are dreamed by artists,” and hopefully this event can make some dreams come true for independent film makers.”
Tony Armer, the Executive Director of the Sunscreen Film Festival then enlightened the attendees on the film festival and its purpose.
The Sunscreen Film Festival is a non-profit program of the St. Petersburg Clearwater Film Society and has encouraged the production of independent films in Florida since 2005. The specific objective of the Sunscreen Film Festival is to promote the exhibition of works by filmmakers by conducting education programs that teach the art and science of acting, filmmaking and cinematography.
Due to the increasing public awareness of this cause and gaining support of local filmmaking as a cultural and economic asset for the State of Florida, attendance of the actual festival in St. Petersburg, Florida has gone from 600 in 2005 to 11,000 just last April, which is their highest ever.
This was followed by stellar performances of Broadway hits by local talents: Trevor Botkin, Tom Godfrey, Jessy Leros, Colleen Lindsay, Elena Marrero, Helen Pinder, Julieta Santagostino, Joanie Sigal, L.D. Sledge, Daria Tiana, the Clearwater Academy International Choir and the Guilfoil Ballet Dance Troupe.
These performers sang and danced to hits from CABARET, CHICAGO, GUYS & DOLLS, PHANTOM OF THE OPERA, RENT, WICKED and GREASE. The “Cell Block Tango” from Chicago was a definite favorite.
Nearly $2500 was raised for the festival, and will be used to bring industry professionals in to participate in the educational seminars during the festival.
If you would like to find out how you can contribute to next year’s 2012 Sunscreen Film Festival and to the St. Petersburg Clearwater Film Society go to www.sunscreenfilmfestival.com.
Tuesday, August 09, 2011
Wade Henry—Juggler Extraordinaire Delights and Uplifts the CrowdScientologist Wade Henry’s jovial nature and love of people inspired his unique career. His profile is one of 200 "Meet a Scientologist" videos on the Scientology website at www.Scientology.org.
Wade Henry may look like an ordinary guy, but appearances can be deceiving. True, he’s up early for a quick bite to eat and off to work like the rest of us. But "work" is juggling chain saws or eating fire while riding a 12-foot unicycle.
In his "Meet a Scientologist" video at www.Scientology.org, Henry demonstrates some of the tools of his trade.
Fresh out of college with a business degree in 1995, Henry, now 38, decided to tour the world before settling down. He certainly toured, but chances are he’ll never settle down.
Halfway around the planet from his native Toronto when he ran out of money in Sydney, Australia, he created an act he could perform on the streets for tips. But natural entertainer that he is, he enjoyed the "work" so much, he has made it his lifelong career.
It was also in Sydney that Henry found Scientology, picking up and reading a copy of Dianetics: The Modern Science of Mental Health.
"I had questions about our spiritual nature," says Henry. "Reading books by L. Ron Hubbard, it was clear he not only had answers but also a practical technology that works."
Returning home to Toronto, Henry continued with his Scientology studies. At the Church of Scientology of Toronto, he met and married wife Helen, a single mother of five, and instantly became the patriarch of a large and happy family that has grown to include a son-in-law and two grandchildren.
Now living in Clearwater, Florida, the couple manage his business, The Wade Henry Show. They have used administrative technology developed by L. Ron Hubbard to evolve it from street entertainment to a thriving career with Henry performing nearly 600 shows a year, mostly at festivals and fairs with the occasional corporate event.
"As a performer, Scientology has helped me communicate and develop rapport with my audiences," Henry says.
It has also helped him concentrate.
"I cannot be juggling a chain saw in front of hundreds of people and have my mind wandering into problems that I have back at home or things that happened last week," he says. "I need to be in the here and now and Scientology has helped me do that."
Henry loves entertaining, and the best part of it is the people.
"What I like about being a performing artist is going into communities and uplifting people," Henry says. "I get them away from the television sets and extricated from the virtual world and I deliver shows that bring them up and make them feel more alive."
And being alive is what it’s all about.
"Being a Scientologist is an adventure," says Henry, "and I'm an adventurer. So I love being a Scientologist."
Watch the Wade Henry video on www.Scientology.org.
The popular "Meet a Scientologist" profiles on the Church of Scientology International Video Channel at Scientology.org now total 200 broadcast-quality documentary videos featuring Scientologists from diverse locations and walks of life. The personal stories are told by Scientologists who are educators, teenagers, skydivers, a golf instructor, a hip-hop dancer, IT manager, stunt pilot, mothers, fathers, dentists, photographers, actors, musicians, fashion designers, engineers, students, business owners and more.
A digital pioneer and leader in the online religious community, in April 2008 the Church of Scientology became the first major religion to launch its own official YouTube Video Channel, which has now been viewed by millions of visitors.
Scientology - Find out
Friday, June 24, 2011
Sunday, February 06, 2011
Meet a Scientologist: What is the Value of a Single Life?
Melissa Wattman was not expected to see her ninth birthday. Diagnosed with leukemia, she regained the will to live through Scientology, and recovered.
Having experienced such a miracle herself, it is not surprising that when Melissa turned 16 she decided to become a Scientology auditor. An auditor is a Scientology spiritual counselor, from Latin audire, “to hear or listen.”
“When I looked at how much help I’d received and how much it bettered my life, I wanted to give back,” says Wattman. “People suffer. They experience the death of someone they love, or someone betrays them or they fail. Without Dianetics and Scientology auditing these personal tragedies continue to affect them the rest of their lives and if the pain is less acute, it is only because they have become numb. As a Scientology auditor I can restore joy and happiness to their lives.”
In becoming a Scientology auditor in 1992, Wattman, 34, followed in the tradition of her mother Abby who established and directs a counseling group in Clearwater, Florida. Over the past 19 years, Melissa has helped more than 100 people with the auditing skills she has learned.
“I have salvaged marriages and helped people overcome drug addiction. And as a Scientology auditor, I know that whether I help them right away or it takes a little while, it always works,” she says.
One woman came to Wattman devastated. Her brother had been kidnapped and murdered by terrorists, and the woman only learned of it when she saw it on TV news.
“After just a half-hour session, she was calm, looked years younger, and experienced enormous relief. Nothing can bring her brother back,” says Wattman, “but the trauma and shock are gone. She can cherish his memory without suffering, and has been able to move on.”
“Auditing others gets you in tune with people,” she says. “When you make one person happy it causes a ripple effect—that person reaches out to help others. I see auditing as a personal expression of a love of mankind.”
View the Melissa Wattman video at www.Scientology.org.