In a deposition filed for a defamation lawsuit, Tom Cruise admitted that ex-wife Katie Holmes divorced him in part to protect their daughter Suri from the Church of Scientology.

During a legal deposition two months ago for Cruise’s defamation lawsuit against Bauer media, whose magazines claimed Cruise had actually abandoned Suri, lawyers pressed Cruise for the reason Holmes left Cruise, asking if protecting their daughter Suri from Scientology was a factor.  Cruise said he found the question offensive and said there was no reason to protect his daughter from his religion.  The lawyers pressed the question again, asking if Holmes ever indicated that she left Cruise to protect Suri from Scientology, to which Cruise said,

Did she say that? That was one of the assertions, yes.

In the deposition Cruise did admit that his daughter was no longer a practicing member of Scientology, something that normally results in excommunication.  For Scientologists, anyone who leaves the church is considered a “Suppressive Person” and remaining members of the church, including the person’s immediate family, are expected to cut ties.  When asked if he and the church consider Holmes as “Suppressive Person”, Cruise said that it was an oversimplification of the matter, but considered the definition of a “Suppressive Person” on the Scientology website to be accurate.

Former members of the Church of Scientology have indicated that the Church may be bending the rules for their most famous member by not pushing Cruise to cut ties with Holmes and Suri.  Pacido Domingo Jr.’s ex-wife Samantha, who was also labeled a “Suppressive Person”, told Vanity Fair last year that Holmes divorcing Cruise and enrolling Suri in private school would have resulted in disconnection had Holmes been married to any other Scientologist.