In­side Scien­tol­ogy

Scien­tol­ogy leader David Mis­cav­ige’s dad spills on the re­li­gion famed by Tom Cruise – and his own son

Woman’s Day (Australia) - - Contents -

He was once a care­free, play­ful lad un­til proud par­ent Ron Mis­cav­ige in­tro­duced his son David – who was only nine at the time – to Scien­tol­ogy. The lov­ing boy he thought he knew then changed for­ever.

“When I com­pare the happy, fun-lov­ing boy I raised to the man he has be­come, the images of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde spring im­me­di­ately to mind,” says Ron.

Ris­ing through the ranks, David, now 58, was de­clared head of the

Church Ch h of fs Scien­tol­ogy i l i in 1986 fol­low­ing the death of founder L Ron Hubbard.

Now, Ron gives a bru­tal and hon­est in­sight into his decades as a Scien­tol­o­gist and spills the beans on Mission: Im­pos­si­ble star Tom Cruise’s de­vo­tion to the church, as one of its most val­ued mem­bers.

“Tom looks up to David as the top spir­i­tual be­ing on the planet,” Ron re­veals. “He idolises him.

“If any­thing, Tom runs what­ever de­ci­sion he has to make through David, not the other way around.”

The 83-year-old fa­ther of the cult leader ad­mits to hav­ing met Tom “many times”, and says the 56-year-old Hol­ly­wood heavy­weight once made a $14 mil­lion do­na­tion to the church.

“David ordered every­one in the Sea Org to call him Mr Cruise, never Tom, as a sign of re­spect,” he ex­plains. “All that said, David is very much the leader and no­body, in­clud­ing Tom, dis­obeys him.”

Ron re­calls how Tom’s sec­ond wife, Ni­cole Kid­man, would visit the church’s Gold Base head­quar­ters in Cal­i­for­nia.

“I thought she was a nice lady.” Ron re­veals. “She did get au­dited, but she was never solidly into the church. Her fa­ther was seen as a prob­lem be­cause he was a psy­chol­o­gist.”

Even­tu­ally, Ni­cole, 51, and Tom sep­a­rated, and the Top Gun star dated sev­eral ac­tresses be­fore hook­ing up with Katie Holmes.

TOXIC POL­ICY

“The church or­gan­ised in­ter­views to find Tom a new girl­friend and Katie was picked,” Ron ex­plains on how they were matched up.

“At their home they would have people from the Sea Or­gan­i­sa­tion liv­ing with them, mak­ing sure all of Tom’s whims and de­sires were taken care of. That didn’t sit well with Katie, but the big is­sue was rais­ing [their daugh­ter] Suri as a Scien­tol­o­gist. If that hap­pened, some­day it was a pos­si­bil­ity that she would dis­con­nect from Katie.

“Ul­ti­mately, this is what has hap­pened to me. It’s a toxic pol­icy that ru­ins lives. Katie didn’t want that to hap­pen so she left.”

Ron quit Scien­tol­ogy in 2012 af­ter 41 years – the same year that Katie, 39, di­vorced Tom.

The mu­si­cian and his sec­ond wife Becky left Gold Base un­der the pre­tence they were run­ning er­rands and es­caped.

The fol­low­ing year, he was told by po­lice that his pow­er­ful son had hired people to watch his ev­ery move for months.

Scien­tol­ogy has at­tempted to dis­credit Ron’s name and rep­u­ta­tion, but that did lit­tle to dis­cour­age him from re­leas­ing his mem­oir Ruthless: Scien­tol­ogy, My Son David Mis­cav­ige And Me in 2016.

Ron now lives a peace­ful life in Wis­con­sin, but to this day be­lieves the re­li­gion has turned his son into a “mon­ster”.

“David runs Scien­tol­ogy with an iron fist,” he says. “And to my mind, it has be­come a cult, pure and sim­ple.”

‘Tom looks up to David as the top spir­i­tual be­ing on the planet’

The for­mer Scien­tol­ogy mem­ber claims his daugh­ters Denise – David’s twin sis­ter – and Lori have also “dis­con­nected” from him.

Ron says his son turned the church into an “ob­ses­sively con­trol­ling, se­cre­tive money ma­chine”. Tom “idolises” David, says Ron.

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