Thinking about opening a Scientology church? We tell you what you need to know to get started.
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Starting a Scientology Center
Celebrities like Tom Cruise, John Travolta and Kirstie Alley have put Scientology on the map and raised its profile with the American public. Yet according to most estimates, there less than 50,000 active Scientologists in the U.S. -- a modest figure that clearly leaves room for religious entrepreneurs to pursue growth and expansion.
At its core, Scientology is a philosophy that invites followers to recover their true and immortal nature. Through classes and "auditing", members can progress in their personal journeys and achieve higher states of consciousness.
The organizational structure Scientology is rigid; denominational leaders maintain strict control over Scientology centers and churches. In addition to the upper echelons of the movement, Scientology relies on lay practitioners and staff to operate its many sub-organizations and spiritual centers. As a religious entrepreneur, you'll need the right connections and the full support of Scientology's "Sea Organization" to launch an approved Scientology church.
Networking for Scientology Entrepreneurs
Scientology is a closed organizational system that actively discourages outsiders from using the Scientology label to launch new endeavors. So in order to gain approval for a new work, Scientologist entrepreneurs need to be proactive about networking and connecting with church leadership.
Religious networking is not that different from business networking. Although a certain amount of networking happens naturally, the most effective networker take the initiative and create strategies for making connections with targeted influencers.
You don't have to be a major player to use networking to your advantage. Small business owners routinely network with influential contacts and reap benefits for their efforts. To learn more about how you can use networking to get your foot in the door, take a look at our networking tips for entrepreneurs.
These additional resources regarding starting a religious organization may be of interest to you.
If you already are in business and came here to learn about growing an existing Scientology church, these resources will come in handy:
If you came here to learn about selling to Scientology churches, you're in the wrong place. These resources are more appropriate for you:
We offer startup guides for other religions. View some of our sample guides below.