In 1899, Rev. Dr. Shuye Sonoda and Rev. Kakuryo Nishijima arrived in San Francisco from Japan in response to help fill a void in the hearts of Jodo Shinshu Buddhists living in the United States. This was the beginning of the now Buddhist Churches of America organization with September 1 known as BCA Founding Day.
We owe a deep debt of gratitude to Nishi Hongwanji-Ha in Kyoto for answering the request, to Rev. Sonoda and Rev. Nishijima for setting the foundation of Jodo Shinshu Buddhism in the United States, and to all of the ministers, Dharma teachers, and Sangha members before us. Their efforts, sacrifices, and perseverance have allowed us to receive the Dharma today. They have provided all of us a wonderful spiritual tradition and Shinran Shonin’s teachings shared by dedicated ministers, Minister’s Assistants, and teachers.
BCA is fortunate to have the Archives-Historic Preservation Committee: Sandy Saeki, Chairperson, Rev. William Briones and Rev. Kory Quon, Ministerial Advisors.
The primary mission of the committee is to continue the work on capturing the rich history of the BCA and its temples. In 2018, the BCA archive collection was donated to UCLA as the materials are preserved for future reference work, research purposes, and general enrichment.
Throughout the 123 years, the BCA members have supported the organization as well as their respective temples and churches. To continue their efforts in sustaining BCA and its temples and sharing the Dharma, the Propagation and Membership Committee was established with Gary Mukai, Chairperson, Rev. Yuki Sugahara and Rev. Matthew Hamasaki, Ministerial Advisors.