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DJ Soto: Why Virtual Reality Church Is Just As Legitimate As Gathering in Person

“We’ve planted multiple churches across the metaverse.”

“On one hand it’s very similar to a physical church experience…but in virtual reality the game is changed in that we build these experiences. So think about Moses and the Red Sea…we’ll build that. So I’m not preaching from the stage any more. We’re walking through these different experiences.”

Hebrews has been fascinating, going through the old tabernacle system, building that and walking through that and talking about the most Holy of Holies. There’s just no shortage of imagery and technology that we can use to make the Scriptures come to life.”

“Our churches in the future are going to be building experiences, whether they’re in VR or AR, augmented reality.”

“This is an opportunity as we move into the ‘Experience Age’ to reimagine what church could be.”

Church leaders, as you go shifting into this new [world], be careful not to replicate just for the sake of replication, one for one.”

“What are the core elements of what a church is? Because I think that maybe sometimes we are used to a construct that’s not even actually what church is.”

“There still seems to be an anti-digital attitude that’s still prevailing and that’s unfortunate because I think that the future is digital, virtual or augmented.”

“At the fundamental level, at its core for us, church is the gathering of the believers.”

“We also try to break the idea that church is a one-hour event. Because that is still such a heavy psychological realization that people have.”

“Churches tend to go kicking and screaming into this new technology [television, radio and the internet], which is unfortunate.”

“There are people who come to our church, VR Church and MMO Church, that would never step foot in a church, and I think that’s really important to consider.”

“I think those are the two fears: we’re going to lose attendance and we’re going to lose giving.”

“The pandemic didn’t affect us. It just caused us to grow.”

“Don’t misunderstand. [If people aren’t coming back to in-person church], that doesn’t mean they’re leaving your church. They’re just leaving the idea of a physical event on Sunday morning.”

Mentioned in the Show by DJ Soto

MMO Church
VR Church

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As Vice President of Ministry Mobilization for Outreach, Inc., Jason dedicates his time to encouraging and equipping churches, denominations and ministry organizations to develop their Kingdom effectiveness by creating a culture that is both incarnational and invitational. He also serves as the Executive Director of the National Back to Church Sunday movement and hosts the weekly ChurchLeaders podcast. Jason lives on Anastasia Island, Florida, with his beautiful wife and children. Connect with him on Twitter and Instagram @jasondaye