SiVIC, the Silicon Valley Interreligious Council, was created in 2011 to serve as a connecting point for interreligious efforts in Santa Clara County, including education, dialogue, and service.
Silicon Valley is home to some 50 Buddhist centers, the largest Sikh Gurdwara in North America, a Jain temple, a Silicon Valley “store front” (converted technology assembly plant) mosque whose Friday prayer service draws over 3000 participants, several Hindu centers that host cultural programs and religious ceremonies, one of the Zoroastrian fire temples in North America, numerous Baha’i spiritual assemblies, and synagogues—reflecting the fact that the Valley is home to one of the most religiously diverse landscapes in North America. The percentage of individuals who identify with faith traditions other than Christianity—10%– is double that of the United States; but we also have a higher percentage of residents—17%–who identify themselves as non-affiliated compared to other parts of the country.
Perhaps reflecting the entrepreneurial spirit and frequent fragmentation of Silicon Valley, until the creation of SiVIC no single formal interreligious organization stood out as a clear center of multifaith cooperation or encounter in the community. Instead, a number of organizations of varying size and purpose have emerged as community needs or common interests have led people to make common cause. SiVIC seeks to encourage, connect, and showcase those efforts.