Note: Original New York Times
on 09-20-2001 is titled "CHANGED LIVES; Religious Leader Takes
to Ground Zero."
New York Times Search
New York Times Abstract
[Do your own Search
on NY Times]
Original article webbed in several places, including
here , here,
St. Petersburg Times 09-21-2001
More re: John Carmichael
The New York Times
THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 20, 2001
large role in cleanup
NEW YORK -- Amid faces gray with grief and grime, theirs are
fresh, even smiling.
Among blackened uniforms and sooty equipment, their yellow T-shirts
buoys. They are clean.
At any time, well over 100 volunteer ministers from the Church of Scientology
mill around the remains of the World Trade Center. On the day of the attack, they
took in food to workers. Since then, they have taken the techniques developed
by the church's founder, L. Ron Hubbard.
When rescue workers stagger from the wreckage, the ministers, identified by
their T-shirts, try to focus the workers' minds and revive their bodies. In "locationals,"
workers are told to look at the sky, or at water bottles on a table - anything
to ground them in the present, the outside world, rather than the horror within
"They bring people back, so to speak, so they are in control
mind and environment," said the Rev. John Carmichael, 54, the
the Church of Scientology of New York. "You want to help get
rid of the fatigue
and the fuzziness."
The volunteer corps of ministers has been active in disasters - from earthquakes
in Los Angeles to the bombings in Oklahoma City and Atlanta - since 1988. But
the disaster this time far surpasses those in scale. At least 800 ministers have
cycled through the scene, many coming from Quebec, Florida or California.
[photo] [photo caption: Rev. John Carmichael, President of the Church of Scientology
of New York on West Street near Chambers.
On Wednesday, Carmichael's 19-year-old son manned the busy front
desk at the
church's building on 46th Street. Signs proclaimed it a "
Headquarters" and encouraged volunteers to ask how they could
Though many religious organizations are supplying assistance for
few are as well-organized as the Scientologists, or as evident at
the scene. When
many volunteers were asked to clear out over the weekend, the
allowed to stay, working alongside groups like the American Red
Cross and the
When he drove down to the site on Tuesday, Carmichael said, a
police officer waved him through. "You're a Scientologist," he recalled
the officer saying. "You're good."
[Box:] Though many religious organizations are supplying assistance for
the disaster, few are as well-organized as the Scientologists, or as evident at
the scene. When many volunteers were asked to clear out over the weekend, the
Scientologists were allowed to stay, working alongside groups like the American
Red Cross and the Salvation Army.