The Bud­dhist Churches of Amer­ica (BCA) is an incor­po­rated reli­gious orga­ni­za­tion of Amer­i­can Shin Bud­dhist affil­i­ated with the Jodo Shin­shu Hongwanji-ha Hong­wanji denom­i­na­tion within the Con­ti­nen­tal United States.

The BCA is gov­erned by Amer­i­cans of the Shin Bud­dhist faith through a Board of Direc­tors com­prised of the Bishop, the Board Pres­i­dent, the Min­is­te­r­ial Asso­ci­a­tion Chair­per­son, district-elected Board mem­bers, Board members-at-large and rep­re­sen­ta­tives from the rec­og­nized BCA-affiliated organization.

The Amer­i­can Shin Bud­dhists within the State of Hawaii have a sep­a­rate juris­dic­tion and admin­is­tra­tion because of the his­tor­i­cal sep­a­ra­tion at the time of its found­ing since the King­dom of Hawaii was not a part of the United States. The Jodo Shin­shu Hongwanji-ha denom­i­na­tion is orga­nized as the Honpa Hong­wanji Mis­sion of Hawaii , head­quar­tered at 1727 Pali High­way, Hon­olulu, Hawaii 96813.

The Bud­dhist Churches of Amer­ica national head­quar­ters serves as a regional cen­ter of the World Fel­low­ship of Bud­dhists and is a sup­port­ing mem­ber of the World Con­fer­ence on Reli­gion and Peace (WCRP).


Bishop’s Message

Welcome, and thank you for visiting our website. It is not by accident that you are reading this message. It is, in fact, due to your past karmic conditions.

Nothing happens without a cause or causes and conditions. You may be here because of family influences, a school assignment, or casual Internet surfing. Regardless of the reason, your visit is appreciated and it may even change your life.

I invite you, if possible, to visit a temple or church close to where you live and feel the warmth of the Buddhist Congregation called the sangha.

Let us find the true meaning of our lives through learning the Dharma taught by the Buddha and successive teachers. I assure you; their words of wisdom will inspire you and give a new dimension to your life.

Once again, thank you very much for your visit.

Yours Truly in the Dharma,

Reverend Kodo Umezu, Bishop
Buddhist Churches of America



Our True Leader is the Buddha

The outcome of the recent presidential election has created feelings of uncertainty and fear among many people in our community and country. At the same time, it made many people happy and gave them joy and hope for the future.

At a time like this, we need to be reminded of the universal caring heart and mind of Amida Tathagata embracing all people. It takes us to the realm beyond the tribulations of this human world.

The loving heart and mind of the world of Oneness touches us and wishes for all of us to live in peace, overcoming our limited viewpoints. The true guide for all beings, to me, is Amida Buddha. Amida Buddha cares about all people regardless of race, religion, gender, sexuality, wealth, social status, etc. Amida Buddha shows compassion especially to those who are suffering. No matter what type of conditions we may be living in, Amida Buddha will always be there. Therefore, in my opinion, Amida Buddha is the true leader for all.

If we do not turn to the Light of Wisdom we will continue to dwell in a world of darkness and live with fear, loneliness, and endless anxiety. Being guided by this Compassionate Light of Wisdom, realizing our afflictions, we do what we can to be good citizens of the world.

Amid all the commotion, let us, together with fellow travelers of this path, pause and hear the words of guidance and encouragement coming from individuals who have been touched by the Buddha’s universal mind and heart. And let us reflect on how our lives and actions can be guided by this Teaching.

“When we reflect on the establishment of the Vow,
We find that the Tathagata, without abandoning sentient beings in pain and affliction,
Has taken the directing of virtue to them as foremost,
Thus fulfilling the mind of great compassion.”

                        (Shinran Shonin, Collected Works of Shinran, p.408)

Reverend Kodo Umezu, Bishop, Buddhist Churches of America