Suddenly, being called a "cult" seems the least of Scientology's worries. The movement is already facing a summer of high-profile court cases, bitter defections, blockbuster exposés and members bringing the so-called religion into disrepute. Now its 60th-anniversary year has brought the divorce of its two most high-profile proponents.
Worse, there were reports yesterday that Katie Holmes's decision to walk out on Tom Cruise was linked to her actor husband's involvement with Scientology. According to the celebrity website TMZ, she was concerned Cruise would drag their six-year-old daughter, Suri, deep into the movement. The reports throw the spotlight once again on the belief system that promises members "spiritual rehabilitation" through counselling sessions described as "auditing".
...Last week, Debbie Cook, a former Scientology church executive, said she was leaving the US for Guadeloupe, after her damaging testimony on the faith earlier this year...
Scientology's reputation will take a further hit when the Pulitzer Prize-winning author Lawrence Wright's book on the faith is published. Titled The Heretic of Hollywood: Paul Haggis vs the Church of Scientology, it has been described as "the most profound reckoning to date".
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