Source: The New York Times
On March 10, 2002, The New York Times featured the story, "In Aftermath of Temple Fire, Sikhs Pray, and Share Sorrow." It reported on the fire that destroyed a Sikh gurdwara in the Richmond Hill section of Queens, "the oldest and largest Sikh gathering place in the region." The article continued, "Members of the temple said there were about 20 gurdwaras and about 300,000 Sikhs in the metropolitan area, but that when the temple was founded, in 1972, there were fewer than 100 Sikh families in all of New York City. They joined together and, tired of squeezing into each other's homes for prayers, bought a 19th-century church on 118th Street in Richmond Hill. They added the golden dome that is characteristic of Sikh temples, and connected the church to an existing home to form a community center, complete with a basement dining hall and living quarters for visitors." The cause of the fire is under investigation.