Praying and Riding for Peace Through the Streets of South Los Angeles
Bringing the community together in the name of common-sense values and peace.
On Sunday, February 26, bikers, low riders and Corvette club members rode through South Los Angeles in celebration of the 10th anniversary of the United in Peace Rides. Along the way, they stopped to pray for the victims of senseless violence. And, as it does each month, the Peace Ride ended at the Church of Scientology Community Center in South L.A., whose participation in each of the rides has been pivotal in the movement’s success.
Each month, Peace Riders hand out copies of The Way to Happiness. The signature orange cover of the Peace Ride booklet matches the initiative’s banners, flags and T-shirts. But it is what is inside these booklets that makes them so important—19 common-sense precepts or values shared by people of goodwill of all cultures, backgrounds, religions and beliefs.
A police officer taking part in this month’s Peace Ride joined the LAPD eight years ago after serving in the Marines. Born and raised in South Central, he knows first-hand the cultural and ethnic tensions that break out in violence in the city. He spoke of the importance of The Way to Happiness as a way to cut through differences and restore communication by reminding people of what we all have in common.
A woman joined one of the three Peace Ride prayer circles held along Sunday’s route to pray for a life lost to gang violence. She spoke of the importance of getting this booklet into the hands of youth. Young people have to make decisions that will affect them the rest of their lives, she said. Their decisions can go either way. And The Way to Happiness can help them choose peace and a better life for their families and the entire community.
At the Scientology Community Center at the end of the ride, a Peace Ride board member presented an award to author, humanitarian and Scientology Founder L. Ron Hubbard who authored The Way to Happiness, saying the booklet’s common-sense values form the foundation of the initiative’s success. Next, the Peace Rides recognized the LAPD for 10 years of protecting the riders each month with motorcycle patrols from the South Traffic Division.
The Way to Happiness Foundation presented an award to the Peace Rides for raising awareness of gang violence and bringing the community together in the name of peace.
United in Peace is a multiethnic, multifaith popular movement that unites people to work together to bring peace to our inner cities. Law enforcement and government leaders have recognized the reduction in violence and crime rates in neighborhoods touched by the Peace Rides. In Compton, California, the mayor and city council have acknowledged the Peace Rides, noting that each ride has also resulted in statistical drops in crime.
For more information on the Peace Rides, watch an episode of Voices for Humanity, an original series of the Scientology Network. Learn how Minister Tony Muhammad used these rides to build a peace movement among notorious warring gangs in South Los Angeles.
Scientology ecclesiastical leader Mr. David Miscavige dedicated the Church of Scientology of Inglewood and its South Los Angeles Community Center in 2011. The Church and Community Center are featured in an episode of Destination Scientology on the Scientology Network.
The Scientology religion was founded by author and philosopher L. Ron Hubbard. The first Church of Scientology was formed in Los Angeles in 1954 and the religion has expanded to more than 11,000 Churches, Missions and affiliated groups, with millions of members in 167 countries.
Church of Scientology Media Relations
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