Sunday, April 24, 2005

Scientology Volunteer Ministers Helping Others

Its rather long, but a worthwhile article that I found that clearly describes what Scientology Volunteer Ministers are and what they do. With all the news of what the "yellow shirts" have been doing in SE Asia - thought this might be of interest for a little background. Plus some interesting links to give more info. "In the mid-1970s, L. Ron Hubbard concluded that criminal activities were rising in proportion to the decline in religious influence. He further noted that many had no place to turn when they needed solutions to life’s problems. Yet Scientology contains data that anyone can use in any part of their lives, data people can use to help each other. When Scientology is used, conditions do improve. The way to a better society is to make it available as broadly as possible. One of the key ways the Church fosters this idea is through the Volunteer Minister program. "The program makes help broadly available by providing fundamental aspects of Scientology technology to anyone, Scientologist and non-Scientologist alike. To supply this technology The Scientology Handbook, by L. Ron Hubbard, was first published as The Volunteer Minister’s Handbook in 1976. Since then, thousands of individuals have performed a vital role as Volunteer Ministers in their communities. "The Church takes an active role to help them by distributing The Scientology Handbook, offering training and certification on its materials, putting Volunteer Ministers in contact with each other and assisting them to start in their ministry. The Volunteer Minister program is nonsectarian and, in addition to training lay people, also trains ministers of other denominations to render more effective assistance to those around them. "There are no restrictions on who may become a Volunteer Minister or what he may do to assist others. Anything a minister would do, a Volunteer Minister does. And any area of life can benefit from his help. "The Scientology Handbook is the result of hundreds of thousands of hours of research and application. It teaches many of the helpful fundamentals of Scientology in a series of simple and swiftly learned lessons. After studying these lessons, one can immediately begin ministering to the needs of the community in a volunteer capacity. Volunteer Ministers need not belong to any association or congregation. All one requires is knowledge of the handbook and the desire to help. "Those following any faith may become a Volunteer Minister. But he is a minister and he helps his fellow man. He does not shut his eyes to the pain, evil and injustice in the world. Rather, he is trained to handle such misery and help others achieve the relief that comes from the application of Scientology technology to conditions in life. People in all areas can do something for their fellow man through the Volunteer Minister program. "A Volunteer Minister eases the tribulations of people. He saves troubled marriages, helps failing students, resolves conflicts between individuals and groups, rescues drug addicts from the agony of withdrawal convulsions, eases physical discomfort and assists the injured. Such are just some of the miracles Volunteer Ministers accomplish every day. He supplies services which are lacking in the society, and there is a tremendous amount he can do. "Each section of The Scientology Handbook teaches a body of basic Scientology technology on a different subject. With each lesson learned, the Volunteer Minister becomes more able to effectively deal with situations he sees in life: "A person smashes his hand in a car door. The Volunteer Minister is taught assist technology and so can help alleviate the pain and help the injury heal more rapidly. He applies similar techniques to ease illnesses as well. A married couple has constant arguments. The Volunteer Minister knows the mechanisms which underlie marital conflicts and can counsel them, restore harmony and save the marriage. Two shop owners in the neighborhood are in conflict. With what he is taught, the Volunteer Minister can locate the real source of the conflict and resolve it. A friend has fallen on hard times and is using drugs. The Volunteer Minister has studied how to get him off drugs and can help him straighten out his life. A restaurant owner’s business has taken a downturn. The Volunteer Minister can isolate the reason for this and help the owner right his business. These are not unusual circumstances; they happen all the time. Ordinarily, people are helpless in such situations, even if they want to help; a Volunteer Minister, on the other hand, has been trained to render effective assistance. And so he does something about it. "If the person desires to do it, an optional course is offered at his church or mission. Such training at the church, by virtue of assistance from experienced personnel, can better equip a Volunteer Minister to perform his duties. "Volunteer Ministers frequently form groups with each other which enable them to better serve the community. Such groups allow newer ministers to gain experience by working with more practiced ones. Some even have congregations, holding Sunday services or seminars with topics relevant to their communities and individual interests. "Volunteer Ministers also work with and assist ministers of other denominations. All churches are involved in helping their fellow man and can work together to accomplish these goals. Upon invitation, Volunteer Ministers deliver sermons at other churches. "By mutual cooperation and assistance, ministers of all denominations strengthen the force of religion in the world. In so doing they help reverse the cultural decay stemming from the rampant materialism plaguing modern society. "The good works of Volunteer Ministers are noticed by the society at large. A perfect example came from a South African Volunteer Minister, the Reverend William Mesilane. This sixty-nine-year-old minister of the Christ Assembly Church utilized Scientology technology to help people in his community. "He eased someone’s pain using the Touch Assist on the train from Maclear to Sterkstroom,” the newspaper reported. “He saw a woman crying, who jumped with terror if anyone spoke to her. He asked her what was wrong and she did not know. He offered to do a Touch Assist, which took twenty minutes. During that time, the train conductor came and watched him at work, as well as curious passengers. At the end of the Touch Assist the woman was laughing and calm.” "William claims he took on a new lease in life when he began to study the handbook. He eagerly plans to use all he learns to help his people further.” "As more and more people see the value of bringing true help to another, the Volunteer Minister program spreads further throughout the society. By freely offering his assistance to those who need it, the effective contributions of the Volunteer Minister are making the world a better place."