HUBBARD COMMUNICATIONS OFFICE
Saint Hill Manor, East Grinstead, Sussex
HCO POLICY LETTER OF 22 FEBRUARY 1991
HCO PL 21 Feb. 91 RELIGIOUS INFLUENCE IN SOCIETY
Book: The Volunteer Minister’s Handbook
Through the application of Scientology we are taking the only effective steps to arrest and reverse the deterioration of a world where the individual is increasingly beset by economic, political and social forces that seem more and more overwhelming.
We have a program now by which any person can learn to use basic fundamentals of Scientology to halt this dwindling spiral by helping to relieve his fellows of their sufferings and problems.
It is called the Volunteer Minister Program. It utilizes the Volunteer Minister’s Handbook to provide training in basic Scientology principles that people who are not yet trained as professional auditors can use to assist people they meet who need help with their lives.
It is an effective way of getting Scientology applied on a broad, grass-roots level throughout the society.
A Volunteer Minister in Scientology is defined as a person who on a strictly volunteer basis helps out his fellow man by providing simple, basic counseling to people he meets to assist them in overcoming difficulties they may be having in life. A Volunteer Minister understands that something needs to be done about the world and though he may not be a professionally trained Scientology auditor, he nevertheless wants to do what he can to help those around him. By training as a Volunteer Minister he learns basic tools he can then use to alleviate troubles of people he knows or meets in life. A Volunteer Minister does not operate as a professional field auditor, but does what he does because he sees that people need a hand and he knows that with Scientology something can be done about it.
The idea of Volunteer Ministers was actually borrowed from the basic pattern of the “barefoot doctor of China” who would administer help to alleviate the tortured troubles of man. He was not well trained but he was about the only assistance available to many people.
In the Volunteer Minister Program we have our “barefoot” minister who provides about the only spiritual counseling readily available to some people. He provides services which are totally nonexistent in the society, services which neither the psychiatrist nor anyone else for that matter provides. The whole idea of a Volunteer Minister in Scientology is that he can do
something for man on a volunteer basis.
And so, with Volunteer Ministers out in the field helping to improve conditions we are able to arrest the downward spiral of the world.
WHAT A VOLUNTEER MINISTER CAN DO
The Volunteer Minister’s Handbook is used to train someone in the fundamentals of Scientology so he can operate as a minister to people in the world on a volunteer basis. Through this training he is able to do such things as preserve marriages, get delinquent children back in the fold, handle dissident elements in the society, get families out of the red by better cooperation, solve human conflict and other such positive actions.
All a person has to do to train as a Volunteer Minister is to read The Volunteer Minister’s Handbook and pass an examination given by the Qualifications Division at a Church of Scientology. He then receives a certificate as a Volunteer Minister.
Once trained, he goes out into the world and works amongst his friends and others. He would go ahead working at his regular job, but he is still a Volunteer Minister. He can bring his congregation into the local Church for training or other services to further help them in life.
After his initial training and certification, a Volunteer Minister comes back into the organization for more training in order to attain higher ministerial classes. The more training he gets the more effective he will be.
By virtue of his good works as a Volunteer Minister, he may find himself coming in contact with ministers of other churches. He may find himself invited as a guest to visit other churches or even speak to other congregations. In his dealings with ministers of other faiths or their congregations, the Volunteer Minister should endeavor to promote religion as a necessary part of community life and his message would be one of support for all churches. In the face of general declining church membership and attendance, the simple idea that people should “come to church” is one that will gain support for spiritual values in the society and is in its own way assistance to others.
If asked to address the congregation of another church, the Volunteer Minister should sermonize about ARC or some basic principle that any faith would hold in common. Scientology is the only church that embraces all churches in the world and all religions, and as such the Volunteer Minister would find wide agreement and acceptance from people of other religions.
As the benefits of the Volunteer Minister Program begin to spread throughout the society, a rank and file of people that have been helped will begin to accumulate. These people will begin to feed into missions and Churches of Scientology from wherever the Volunteer Minister has been at work. Making hundreds of thousands of Volunteer Ministers who go out into the world and tend to the needs of people as they find them is the purpose of this program.
It will make the world a far, far better place.
L. RON HUBBARD
Compilation assisted by LRH Technical Research and Compilations