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American Sri Lanka Buddhist Association

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Sri Lankan Buddhist vihara on Staten Island

Place Details

Borough : Staten Island
Neighborhood : Port Richmond
Residential, South Asian/ American, Place of Worship

Place Matters Profile

By Molly Garfinkel and Naomi Sturm

Sri Lankans began migrating to Staten Island in the early 1960s, but as the result of civil war and financial crisis in the 1990s, Staten Island is now home to nearly 7,000 Sri Lankans, who comprise the United States largest Sri Lankan community outside of Sri Lanka. Located in the Port Richmond neighborhood, the American Sri Lanka Buddhist Association, also known as the Staten Island Buddhist Vihara, is a temple that organizes events in the local Sri Lankan community.

Founded in 1981, the New York Buddhist Vihara in Queens long served the relgious and spiritual needs of Sri Lankan and other Buddhists. But for Sri Lankan Buddhists living on Staten Island, a trip to the Queens temple could take as long as three hours, one way. On account of keen local interest, enormous effort, and the kind generosity of a large number of Buddhists,...

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