President of the Church, Corinne Sullivan, is planning the affair: “We are going to have a wonderful arrangement of hors d’oeuvres, speakers from the community and we are even planning to have a special performance from a well-known celebrity.”
“There is certainly a lot to celebrate over these three years,” Fesler continues, “our parishioners are doing a great job reaching out into the community with our social betterment
Among the church’s community initiatives are The Truth About Drugs, a campaign to enlighten youth and teens on the dangers of street drugs. Another is a human rights program which educates about the Universal Declaration of Human Rights signed into existence in 1948 just after World War II. Each of these campaigns has booklets for general distribution and enlightenment, along with public service announcements. “It’s all about education and improving the world we live in,” says Fesler.
Scientology parishioners Marc and Anne Vallieres take that to heart and go straight to the schools to teach kids about the dangers of drugs. They visited more than 17 counties and delivered 128 seminars to 7,000 students in the last two years alone. Anne Vallieres who started the campaign says, “We do this because each time we teach the students about drugs, they thank us, and we know they won’t become drug addicts.”
“Our parishioners do a wonderful job with drug education, and that is one of many things to celebrate,” acknowledges Fesler. “We also have had the privilege of co-chairing the organizing committee for the Tennessee Human Rights Day celebration for the last three years.” Leading up to Human Rights Day, the church meets with other human rights agencies to put together the event, which includes an education portion about the Universal Declaration’s list of rights, speeches and an award ceremony for those who have demonstrated a life-long commitment to human rights. Awardees in previous years include the Rev. Dr. James Lawson, Mr. John Seigenthaler and Rev. Dr. Don Beisswenger.
“These events are hugely successful because of the amount of education that occurs,” says Fesler, “if we educate the community enough about their rights and about the dangers of drugs, abuses will surely die away in these areas. That’s why we have reason to celebrate.”
The Church of Scientology, located at 1130 8th Avenue South, is open 9am-9pm, seven days a week and is open for tours of their public information center during this time. For more information, visit www.scientology.org.