Church, synagogue, temple, gurdwara, center, iglesia, fellowship, society, assembly and congregation are the diverse home names for the estimated 800 religious groups who open their doors to spiritual enlightenment, guidance and worship in the San Fernando Valley. “There is a huge number and range of all different faith traditions here,” said Cambria Smith, president of the Valley Interfaith Council in Chatsworth. “The strength of religious interest has even been seen recently in our neighborhood councils. The introduction of a religious committee with the Winnetka Neighborhood Council is a real reflection of that interest.” VIC has about 200 member faith-based congregations. One of its goals is to bridge the information gap between faiths. Interfaith panel discussions on core religious values and traditions are popular VIC programs held at various houses of worship throughout the year. “There is no doubt that faith is alive in the Valley. It’s powerful to work with people of other faiths,” said the Rev. Wayne Christiansen from Faith Lutheran Church in Canoga Park. “There are hundreds of very beautiful and caring faith communities that do little miracles here every day.” There is an incredible faith network in the San Fernando Valley, said Christiansen, where you not only can come together to worship and stand humbly before God but also find emotional support for the joys and sorrows of life. “There are faith communities out there, working under the radar, looking out for seniors and the poor,” Christiansen said. “I doubt if there is a church, synagogue or mosque that doesn’t get asked by families in need of help. Faith is strong here.” 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!