Meet a Scientologist—Lisa Cummins, Artist, Volunteer and Hands-On Mom

Lisa Cummins was homeschooling her son and three daughters in Dunedin, Florida, and the topic was American History, so she packed them up and took them up and down the East Coast, to see the historical landmarks they were learning about, including the Statue of Liberty, Wall Street, the Empire State Building—and the Twin Towers just months before they came down.

“When 9/11 took place, it hit home personally as we had just been there. Our Church organized a group of Scientology Volunteer Ministers to help the search and rescue teams. Vanessa, my oldest daughter, really wanted to go. We provided relief there for several months and the other children joined us to help over Thanksgiving. It was a life-changing experience for them, and for me as well,” says Cummins. “I had many tools to use to bring order in the confusion, helping thousands of firefighters who were overworked, overstressed and had experienced tremendous loss.”

Three years later, in the wake of the Indian Ocean tsunami, it was another daughter’s turn.

“My 13-year-old daughter Jessica said, ‘Mom, you’ve got to go because they really need you,’ says Cummins. “Next thing I knew she was saying, ‘I want to go too.’”

Both Lisa and Jessica were trained to provide Scientology assists—techniques developed by L. Ron Hubbard that address the spiritual factors in illness, injury, trauma and stress. Their Church of Scientology of Tampa helped them arrange transportation to India as part of their Volunteer Ministers team.

“At first, Jessica was concerned she might not be taken seriously because she was so young. But her age was never a problem and she looked and acted more like 20 than 13. She probably did as much or more to help disaster victims than any of the volunteers,” says Cummins.

The youngest daughter, Catherine, is also a Volunteer Minister and helped provide disaster relief to victims of hurricanes in Florida, and in Texas in the wake of Hurricane Ike. She also accompanied her mother to meetings and conventions where Lisa represented the Florida Churches of Scientology Disaster Response.

Cummins first learned about Scientology in 1982 when she was 20.

“I was holding my own as the manager of a retail store,” she says. “When I found out I was being demoted it didn’t make sense to me. I thought, ‘I must be missing something here. I’m going to go off and find myself.’ I didn’t even really know what I meant, but two weeks later, I saw a Dianetics ad on TV and I thought ‘That’s what I need.’ And I was right!”

While her kids were growing up, Cummins’ life revolved around them—homeschooling, being a Girl Scout troop leader, driving them from one activity to the next. All four now grown, she is energetically pursuing a career in photography and design.

“Scientology helped me really appreciate the importance of the artist, as he or she has the ability to uplift people and society,” says Cummins. “Many people make less of their abilities. I love to help them rehabilitate their creativity.”

Cummins priorities: being a mother, a Scientologist, an artist and a Volunteer Minister.

“Helping others is truly the greatest gift and the greatest responsibility,” she says. “As Scientology Volunteer Ministers, my children gained a maturity beyond their years. It really empowered them. What better thing could you do for your children?”

To learn about more about the Scientology Volunteer Ministers and view videos of Scientologists and the work they are doing to improve society, visit

The popular “Meet a Scientologist” profiles on the Church of Scientology International Video Channel at now total more than 200 broadcast-quality documentary videos featuring Scientologists from diverse locations and walks of life. The personal stories are told by Scientologists who are educators, teenagers, skydivers, a golf instructor, a hip-hop dancer, IT manager, stunt pilot, mothers, fathers, dentists, photographers, actors, musicians, fashion designers, engineers, students, business owners and more.

A digital pioneer and leader in the online religious community, in April 2008 the Church of Scientology became the first major religion to launch its own official YouTube Video Channel, with videos now viewed more than 6 million times.