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Announcing Quicksilver Church

Initial logo courtesy of Bach Nguyen

I had hoped to announce the name of the
church plant during service this Sunday at Garden City. That won’t happen so this is a virtual announcement. 

We are Quicksilver Church.

In 1989, my parents bought a home near New Almaden, in the one of the most southern reaches of San Jose. I never understood why it was called “New” because the area felt decidedly old, run-down, and rural. The original Almaden is a town and municipality in Spain, about 200 miles south of Madrid. The mercury deposits of Almaden, Spain account for the largest quantity of liquid mercury metal produced in the world. 

New Almaden, on the other hand, is aptly named for the location of the oldest and most productive mercury mine in the United States. Mercury, also known as quicksilver, was mined extensively during the California Gold Rush beginning in 1848. Mercury is used to recover tiny pieces of gold mixed in soil and sediments. Mercury and gold settle then combine together to form an amalgam. Gold is then extracted by vaporizing the mercury.

From my parents' home, my bedroom window looked out onto Almaden Quicksilver County Park, where the mercury mines are located. I have fond memories running those hills with my high school friends. From our affluent neighborhood, we could easily access the New Almaden Trail, a 13-mile well-shaded loop of single-track. During high school, I trained for a Boy Scout 50-mile backpacking trip in Quicksilver. During my senior year, my brother and high school friends did a “Death Hike” - an illegal climb to Mount Umunhum (closed to the public at the time). Today, on any given weekend, I will run into Chinese parents from my previous church in the hills of Quicksilver. Up until five years ago, my parents hiked the trails weekly. 

Quicksilver is a toxic metal. Quiksilver (no “c”) is a surf-apparel company. Those meanings are not the focus. 

Quicksilver means San Jose. 

Quicksilver means the Mercury News, the newspaper of San Jose. Quicksilver means Almaden, the neighborhood I grew up in. Quicksilver means the beauty of this area and the iconic Mount Umunhum, which I view whenever I’m driving south in Silicon Valley. 

Quicksilver is a church in and for San Jose. I’ve lived in San Jose for 40+ years and I have no plans to leave until God calls me elsewhere. 

Mercury is a rarity. It is a metal that exists as a liquid at room temperature. The vision of Quicksilver Church is to be a rarity: a gospel-centered church that is open to dialogue. We exist to be a safe place to ask hard questions about God.

Jesus tells a parable of the treasure hidden in a field in Matthew 13:44-45. The man, upon discovering the treasure, recognizes its worth and sells all his possessions in order to buy the field where the treasure is hidden. The treasure is compared to the kingdom of heaven.

Like the original 49ers, my parents came to California in search of treasure. My parents found jobs at IBM and Apple and over time, became wealthy. They also met Jesus and now have a different kind of wealth. People still come to Silicon Valley in search of making a fortune. They come not only from this country but from all over the world. It is the goal of Quicksilver Church to help the people of San Jose discover the greatest treasure.

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