ECHO PARK, Calif. (FOX 11) - This billboard is quickly becoming controversial, and it's about to get even more so with what's happening in a dedication ceremony with an official ribbon cutting to unveil the billboard.
This is 1710 Glendale Boulevard in Echo Park. Two people from Las Vegas are responsible for it - parents Phil and Willie Jones. They dropped out of the Church Of Scientology a while ago, but their adult children - a daughter and a son, are still active members and the Jones' say they have been forbidden to have any communication with their children, Emily and Mike.
The Jones’s haven’t spoken to them in years, so they raised some money with a Go Fund Me account to pay for this billboard to stand on Glendale Boulevard for one month.
It says "To my loved one in Scientology, call me."
It also lists the website the couple has created: StopScientologyDisconnection.com.
The Jones' say the whole point is to take aim at the Church's controversial policy of disconnection. They say they know other family members out there are struggling with the same disconnection problem and can therefore relate to the billboard.
Basically, if you leave the church and become an outspoken critic, as the Jones' have, you're not to have any connection to anyone in the church, regardless of relation.
Scientology describes disconnection as a necessary way to deal with someone who is "antagonistic to Scientology or its tenets" and impedes a member's spiritual progress.
Phil and Willie Jones tried putting up the billboard next to the well-known church headquarters on Hollywood Boulevard but regency outdoor advertising reportedly pulled out of that deal.
There are reports the agency was pressured by the church.
Instead the Jones' settled at its current location about five-and-a-half miles from the church headquarters.
We have no comment so far from the Church of Scientology itself.
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