by: Christie Collbran
Mike, Haydn and I visited Sydney for several days, spoke to Bryan Seymour from Channel 7, were followed by private investigators on a regular basis and despite that had quite a nice time there.
On Friday we drove down to Melbourne, approximately a 10 hour trip with the specific intention of visiting Mike’s mother and brother. Mike’s mother is in her 80’s. He has not seen her for about 8 years. She is unable to travel all the way out to America for a visit, so this could have likely been Mike’s last chance to see his aging mother.
Even after Mike left the Sea Org and prior to speaking on the record with the St. Pete Times in the summer of last year he was in regular communication with his Mom. She wrote him letters telling him about her grandchildren, and her activities and chit chatting about nice things. He wrote her the same kind of letters back and they were having a very nice time being in communication. There was no talk about the church between them.
However after Mike spoke on the record to the St. Pete Times he received disconnection letters from his Scientologist family members, his Mom included. These were obviously letters they were told to write, many of them sounding strangely similar to each other ordering him to go contemplate a rock until he decided to change his ways.
It is my belief that his mother was very saddened by this and that she would have much rather remained in communication. Her disconnection letter was far less harsh than the others. Due to her age she had earlier stated herself that she will not be doing any more services this lifetime as she is OT VIII and could neither travel to Flag nor the Freewinds, and it was obvious that she was taking much pleasure in having the comm line with Mike.
This was a total perversion of PTS/SP technology. There was nothing suppressive about her comm line with her son and she was forced to cut the line due to the control designed by David Miscavige. She now lives in a retirement home/assisted living facility in Melbourne near her only other son, Andrew. If she refused to disconnect from Mike she would also lose the support of Andrew and the right to spend time with him and his children, and her great grandchildren as well. These are usually the most important things in the life of an elderly grandmother. So you can understand the tough position she has been put in.
On Saturday morning we headed out to the nursing home where Barbara Rinder has been staying. Having had a lot of PI activity during our trip so far, it was strikingly quiet that morning. I said to Mike that I feared the church had sent his mother away for the weekend, because if she had been in town we would have had a lot more noise already. When we got to the nursing home Mike and I went to the front desk. There was nobody there immediately and we met a very nice elderly woman named Frances who was also a resident of the nursing home. She told us that she knew Barbara, and that Barbara had gone on a trip to Adelaide for nine days.
We did eventually speak to a receptionist and somebody who was in charge of the place who confirmed for us that Barbara was not there. They tried to whisk us away very rapidly as well, and it smelled as if they had been briefed to expect us.
It was clear that they knew we were coming. Mike Sutter and Marion Pouw had been sent to Australia a week before we arrived to try and shore up the local Scientologists from being influenced by the SPs that were about to arrive. No doubt part of their Mission was to ensure that Mike’s mother was not there so that she and her son could not be reunited one last time.
However, after the Receptionist had tried to send us on our way, Frances came out to our car and said “Don’t mind that woman. She likes to boss everybody around. Would you like me to show you where Barbara stays?“ Of course, we would!
We spent quite some time with Frances — she showed us where Barbara’s room was. There was a sign on the door with her name. A cleaning lady had been nearby cleaning and she let us see inside of the room. Mike pointed to a picture of his Dad that was on the desk, Barbara’s deceased husband. Seeing her room, speaking to one of her mates, knowing that she spent much of her time right where we were standing, but that Mike was unable to see her or speak to her brought me to tears and I stepped away for a moment to collect myself.
Mike is one of the most considerate, decent and loyal persons I have met. He deserves the right to see his own mother and she has the right to be in communication with him. David Miscavige has taken pleasure in ensuring that this does not happen. The whole thing was utterly suppressive and sick.
We decided to buy a card and some chocolates for Barbara and Frances. We took some pictures and chatted quite a bit with Frances who was a very sweet lady. I’m sure she will relay to Barbara how lovely her son Mike was, that she was fortunate enough to spend some time with him, and the other girl (myself) that came with him from the USA. She showed us pictures of her children and grandchildren and some of her accomplishments from her life. I took some pictures of her and Mike and Frances insisted that she get her camera and take some for her to keep as well. She was very happy to meet us and walked us to our car, waved goodbye and watched us drive away until she could no longer see us, waving the whole time.
She was very similar to how I imagined Barbara might be. Although we did not get to see Barbara, I know that the message will get through to her. Mike still loves her and always will. Her friend will be sure to let her know.
Francis, Mike & Christie outside the nursing home
After that we also went to Andrew’s house that was very close by, just to be sure. Nobody was there either and we assume that he took Barbara away. Mike left a card for Andrew in the mailbox as well.
This is just an example of thousands of similar instances of families being torn apart by the suppressive and evil works of David Miscavige and his church, and is why they must be brought to justice.
But we didn’t let him spoil our trip.
We left, had a delicious Australian lunch, and then met with the lovely Heather Grace, a regular here on Marty’s blog. We met at the zoo, found some koalas & kangaroos, and had dinner and drinks together. It was a wonderful time.
The following day we went to watch an Australian rules football game – otherwise known as “footy” and thoroughly enjoyed sitting next to two local and very vocal sports fans who were more fun than watching the game due to their constant banter back and forth (rooting for opposite teams) and the hilarious expressions they used.
Richmond Team Supporter: “What do you call a man with a rabbit stuck up his ass?”
North Melbourne Team Supporter: “I don’t know?”
Richmond Team Supporter: “You call him Warren…… here comes Warren!” (Warren being the name of a player on the opposite team whom he was having a go at).
You gotta love the Australians. We all did.