20 November 2017   |  Last Updated 18-12-2014 10:40

      Sunday 14, December 2014

      LISTEN: Protest outside Manchester Church of Scientology

      A PROTEST took place yesterday outside The Church of Scientology in Manchester.

      The youngest protester waves sign outside Scientology centre - Image by India Greenhalgh

       

      A group named ‘Anonymous’ protested outside the religious centre on Deansgate at midday.

      Only four members attended the demonstration but, “there are usually a lot more of us,” said one anonymous advocate.

       

      The protestors wore masks and marched up Deansgate waving a flag bearing the logo of the Anonymous group. Once they arrived, they protested directly in front of the doors to the centre.

      They attracted attention from onlookers playing loud rock music from an amplified speaker and waving signs with  ‘Honk against Scientology’ and ‘Scientology only wants your money’ written across them.  

      One of the masked males said:’ Anonymous declared war on Scientology in 2008 and we are here today to inform the public of the dangers that come with being recruited into this religion.  Members of The Church of Scientology are victims of a money making scam, they believe they are making the world a better place, they then sell Scientology to other people, thinking they are cleansing the world of its evil.”

      Listen to the 'Anonymous' protesters outside the centre. 




      After Scientology was declared a registered religion in December 2013 the Anonymous demonstrations have become more frequent, happening on a monthly basis.

      The members of the group refer to themselves as ‘Anons’. Another young male explained his reasons for protesting: “I attend monthly because of their views on homosexuality; they believe it is a disease that can only be cured by becoming a member of the church”

       

      Those working inside the centre did not respond to the protestors, nor did they move them on. A member of the church who did not want to be named said: “The group is very intimidating. They have targeted me and my son with death threats because I am a member, how can that be right?”

       

      One of the main statements Anonymous were making was that the religion is taking large amounts of money from its members for services which are “wrong for humanity”.

      Anonymous believe scientologists are trying to 'cleanse' the world, watch a protester speak about it here.



      The unnamed member continued: “We provide drug education and run events that benefit the local community; we offer loads of free services. You don’t have to be a Scientologist to benefit from Scientology.

      We get a lot more interest when they are out there protesting but they are not nice, we would like to be left alone to practice our religion. I am a Scientologist but I am also just a normal person with a family."

      Group ‘Anonymous’ protested for four hours before leaving.  

       

      Have a look at images taken at the protest below. 

       


      By Hayley Windram 
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