Vous Church Miami Started With Its Own Reality TV Show
Led by Rich Wilkerson Jr., Vous Church in Miami, Florida, started very much in the mainstream media’s eye. Wilkerson’s father leads Trinity Church (also in Miami) and Vous is an offshoot of that congregation. Wilkerson was pushed into the public limelight when he officiated the wedding of Kim Kardashian and Kayne West in Italy in 2014. West had attended some services at Trinity while Wilkerson Jr. was preaching a series. The two became friends afterward.
This event, combined with an appearance Wilkerson made on Bieber’s Instagram account, prompted Oxygen to offer Wilkerson and his wife, DawnChere, a reality television show. Although it only lasted one season, the show documented Vous church’s early and humble beginnings in a high school auditorium. The documentary was called Rich in Faith and garnered the fledgling church a lot of exposure—especially among young people.
Vous’ Instagram feed looks very similar to Zoe’s: Nothing but smiles allowed. Apparently, that is what the church’s 106,000 followers want to see.
Judah Smith Is in the Process of Rebranding His Father’s City Church
Judah Smith is the son of pastors Wendell and Gini Smith, who founded City Church in Seattle in 1992. After serving as the church’s youth pastor with his wife, Chelsea, Judah took over his father’s position as lead pastor in 2009. Smith opened another campus in Los Angeles and renamed the church Churchome in the fall of 2017. The weekly attendance is estimated to be about 7,000 people, while the church’s Facebook page has around 20,000 followers. The church’s social media pages are currently undergoing a re-branding process and are “returning soon.”
However, Smith’s account is alive and well with 577,000 followers. Nestled in between selfies, videos of himself preaching, and pictures of his family and famous friends, Smith shares pictures of initiatives the church is working on, including this year’s VBS program.
Despite Churchome’s social media pages that are currently under construction, the church still drums up a lot of chatter on Instagram and the like. People tag themselves at Churchome events, including a worship service the church pulled off at Coachella earlier this year. Bieber led worship at the event and several people posted videos of the pop star leading others in popular Christian songs.
Smith is accredited as the first pastor to really reach out to and mentor Bieber, who is somewhat of a prodigal son in the evangelical world. Bieber’s mother, Pattie Mallette, is an outspoken Christian who first introduced Smith and Bieber. Mallette and Bieber endured estrangement for a time as Bieber dabbled in the Hollywood lifestyle. These past few years, however, Bieber appears to have made a move back to faith judging by the pastoral company he keeps.
In addition to Bieber, Churchome also welcomes Russell Wilson, the quarterback of the Seattle Seahawks and outspoken Christian.
— Judah Smith (@judahsmith) November 30, 2017