This past Saturday I was invited to sit in on an event that non-members rarely get a chance to observe. It was the rededication of the 41,000 square foot Church of Scientology. The Beaux Arts building was constructed in 1898 and was significantly restored back in 2003 by Foit-Albert and Associates. Since that time, the church has looked nothing short of glorious, although throughout this year a substantial amount of work has been underway in non-stop preparation for the rededication that took place on Saturday.
The event, which is said to have attracted 1000 members, was attended by a strong Canadian contingent (as you can see by the Quebec flags being waved in the photo). While many people not 'in the know' (mainly me) were expecting the guest speaker to be Tom Cruise, apparently an even bigger name for Scientologists was waiting in the wings - church Leader David Miscavige. My wife later clued me into the importance of Miscavige's visit by stating, "You went to the event and you don't even know who David Miscavige is?" I then clued her in to the importance of the architecture, which is when she reminded me that I never even made it inside because the line was so long to get in after the ceremony ended.
Ah well, as we can plainly see when passing by, the exterior of the church looks fantastic (especially at dusk). This structure is one of the most significant buildings remaining on Main Street, and it's good to see that its caretakers feel the same way. Next I will see if I can get a tour of the inside of the building once the dust settles from all of the hullabaloo.
Click here to see a tour of the church's interior architectural elements and design. Following photo is from the CoS website: