Peter Mageri is a Christian minister and founder of Kenya's first Orphans International School in the village of Gesonso. The school is devoted to the care of children who have lost their parents to AIDS and tribal wars. He brought the house down when he was awarded last month as the year's top Dianetics Pioneer at an International Scientology Event held in Clearwater, Florida.
Towards the end of 2003, Rev. Mageri found the Dianetics Internet site while surfing the Net.
Immediately intrigued, he ordered a copy of Dianetics: the Modern Science of Mental Health by L. Ron Hubbard, read it and formed a village study group. After basic training and online support, he started the first Book One co-audit in Kenya. A co-audit is a way people can help each other with Dianetics or Scientology counseling. Auditing is Scientology and Dianetics counseling, taken from the Latin word audire which means "to hear or listen." Co-audit is cooperative auditing in which two people to learn to how to audit and audit each other.
With his group helping people overcome every imaginable mental ailment besetting his people, including heavy loss and war-inflicted trauma, people in nearby villages started hearing about it and attending his seminars from as far as a hundred miles away.
To meet the demand, Peter erected Kenya's first Dianetics school — funded by selling some of his cattle — and located it on a patch of land he calls "L. Ron Hubbard Avenue."
There are now 400 Dianetics co-auditors in Gesonso, with another 250 in the town of Kisii, 120 more in the village of Rosaiga and 180 more in other outlying areas who delivered a total of just under a quarter of a million hours of Dianetics auditing in the region over the past year.
Ms. Wieland is an editor of the Scientology Press Office at www.scientologytoday.org