2007 has been a great year for Scientology. Apart from huge expansion, the purchase of many new and very large buildings all over the world to house Scientology Churches and expansion of Church sponsored programs to promote human rights, drug education, expose psychiatric abuse and improve the moral fabric of society, the Church has also had some big wins in the area of religious recognition:
- On the 24th of September 2007, the European Court of Human Rights confirmed the Court's unanimous decision of April 2007 affirming that the Church of Scientology is entitled to the rights and protections of religious freedom that flow to religious organizations pursuant to Article 9 of the European Human Rights Convention. The principles enunciated in that decision upheld the religious freedom of Scientologists and their religious associations and apply throughout the forty-seven member states that have signed and ratified the European Human Rights Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms, including Germany and other key European countries.
- On the 31st of October 2007, the National Court in Madrid issued a landmark decision recognizing that the National Church of Scientology of Spain should be entered in the Registry of Religious Entities as a religion.
- On the 5th of November 2007, the Church of Scientology of Portugal was officially recognized as a religious organization.
- On the 3rd of December 2007, the South African Revenue Service granted the Church of Scientology the status of a Public Benefit Organization as a religious entity with full tax exemption.
The Scientology religion was founded by L. Ron Hubbard. The first Church of Scientology was established in the United States in 1954. It has grown to more than 7,500 churches, missions and groups and ten million members in 163 nations.