Leah Remini Speaks Out After Leaving Church of Scientology

Leah Remini Issues Statement of Thanks after Leaving Scientology
Leah Remini
Jonathan Leibson/WireImage

07/11/2013 AT 09:00 PM EDT

Leah Remini has broken her silence after deciding to leave the Church of Scientology.

"I wish to share my sincere and heartfelt appreciation for the overwhelming positive response I have received from the media, my colleagues, and from fans around the world. I am truly grateful and thankful for all your support," she says in a statement to PEOPLE.

For years, the King of Queens star, 43, was one of the best-known members of the Church of Scientology.

In 2007, Remini laughed off reports that she had tried to convert Jennifer Lopez, one of her closest friends, to Scientology. "Two girls can't hang out together?" she told PEOPLE. "What does that have to do with religion?"

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