Friends Long Past

asho new

This is the New ASHO Building – I cannot locate an image of the older one on Temple Street

Having spent so much time in the Church of Scientology, I got to know a lot of the people at a lot of the different orgs and centers.

When I worked at A.S.H.O. I was in the Public Divisions and got to help organize several different “congresses” – their annual get-togethers to celebrate the accomplishments of the year passed.

Once, on a Saturday, my boss and his boss, the Public Exec Sec, were both gone for the day as was the Captain of the org (it was operated by the Sea Org* by that time) when a call came in from the Church in Mexico City.

The call was routed to me as I was the senior Public Division person in the building and, as such (as it turned out) I was also the temporary Head of the Church of Scientology for the Western Hemisphere.

The fact surprised the heck out of me (and I think they have changed it since then, thank goodness!) but I was given a problem to solve. I gave them my take on what to do and they asked for a telex confirmation of the order – yes, this was long before email, fax, or any of those things.

On Monday morning, the Public Exec Sec was upset that I had “usurped” her authority but in the midst of her reaming me out, the Captain came in and gave me a letter: a hand-written commendation for taking charge in a situation “above my pay grade” and making everything go right.

He then ordered her to his office.

The shouting could be heard throughout the building.

And she was wearing a gray rag tied around her arm for a couple of days.


As you can imagine, things got really tense in that department after that and the Captain very graciously transferred me to a less hostile division.

Scientology may have the answers in a lot of areas but even back then the organization was home to several rather psychotic managers.


* – explaining what the Sea Org is would take pages and can be easily searched online. Basically it was the elite arm of Scientology dedicated to “clearing” (i.e. saving) the planet.