Why Jodhi Meares no longer follows the Church of Scientology

Daily Telegraph, UK/July 4, 2014

By Annette Sharp

Scientologists are not permitted to drink or take drugs — habit forming practices that are frowned upon by the church because they make a person “unsessionable” or unable to be audited, the intimate counselling required by the church.

The fashion designer turned to Scientology several years ago after being introduced to the organisation by, it is believed, her ex-husband James Packer.

Packer was embraced by Scientology’s highest profile recruit, film star Tom Cruise, in 2002 as his marriage to Meares was falling apart in the wake of his disastrous investment in Onetel which collapsed in 2001.

It wasn’t until 2008 that Meares herself was recruited to the religious organisation which targets celebrities and professes to be a panacea for everything from low self-confidence to poor personal relationships and failing to reach one’s potential.

Meares was at a personal low in 2008 after a stint as host of Foxtel’s Australia’s Next Top Model exposed her crippling fear of public speaking.

The former swimsuit model finally quit the show just weeks ahead of the 2008 finals after discovering she would be required to appear live on camera and not in a prerecorded segment. She was lacerated by critics afterwards.

The end of her TV dream coincided with the arrival of Packer’s first child with second wife Erica, a former friend of Meares.

With the Meares camp currently in shut down as she awaits her August 5 court date for driving while suspended and high range driving with a 0.181 blood alcohol reading, friends said it was her new-found romance with singer Jon Stevens that finally helped her move away from the church and renew her passion for her fashion career.

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