How has this man of God made church cool for millennials in the entertainment industry?
 Touré Roberts is the founder of One Church International, one of the fastest growing churches in Los Angeles with a considerable portion of his congregation being young professionals in the entertainment industry. Maybe it’s Robert’s unconventional look that draws in millennials by the masses. He comfortably wears baseball caps, jeans and sneakers in church and in his everyday life and Roberts is always candid with his congregation.

Though One Church International is the spiritual home of thousands every week, the church initially had only a few dozen members. When asked how he knew that he was supposed to keep going as opposed to closing the church, Roberts comments, “In 2002, God said plant the church and he showed me a vision of what the church would look like. From 2002 until now, I didn’t see the fullness of what He said but you have to rely on what you heard. Life is about sowing and reaping. One of the difficult things with that process is when you sow something, you put it in the ground and that thing is invisible and it’s not up to you to determine when that seed is going to become the tree that you saw in your vision.”

Roberts continues, “You have to trust that if you keep working and believing in the law of sowing and reaping, it has to come back to you. You just have to be patient enough to know that you’re not the harvester. You’re just the one that will watch the harvest come up. The current success of One Church International is a result of me staying faithful even when I didn’t have much because ultimately, all labor will pay off.”

Born in Oakland, CA and raised in Watts, CA, Roberts says the exposure his mother provided for him outside of his neighborhood allows him to, “connect with people from the hood to the hills.” In a neighborhood like Watts that was plagued with violence, Roberts says he thought it was a milestone to reach age eighteen and then age twenty-one.

Fortunately for Roberts, his mother pushed  him to be greater than his surroundings but oftentimes, young adults that grow up in periled neighborhoods have limited opportunities. When asked how you can overcome a haphazard environment, Roberts referred to his book, Purpose Awakening: Discover the Epic Idea That Motivated Your Birth. He says, “I have a section in my book entitled, ‘Separated for greatness” and which includes a chapter called ‘Getting out of your fathers house.’ It tells if you really want to find out and live out the purpose of your life you’re going to have to say goodbye to some of the environments and areas that shaped you.”He continues, “You can’t get to the next level without saying goodbye to the former level. You have to leave your complacency in order to step into your destiny.”

Similar to his book, Roberts weekly sermons are messages relative to what young professionals are going through at the time. One of his most popular sermons which has gone viral with over one-hundred thousand online views in a few months is “5 Keys To Identifying Your Soulmate.” Roberts explains some of the key points of the message, “It’s important to first of all be whole within yourself. You need to get to a place where if you never dated anyone in this season because you’re pursuing your purpose, it would be fine.”

As it relates to those in the industry who believes they are too busy working towards their goals to date, Roberts comments, “I’m not mad at a person who says I want to put my pursuit of stability and the pursuit of my dreams in front of a relationship. I’m a firm believer of knowing who you are before you get into a relationship.”

Roberts, who recently wed Bishop TD Jakes daughter Sarah Jakes talks candidly in the “5 Keys To Identifying Your Soulmate” sermon on the importance of being whole which is in direct correlation to one’s self-esteem. He shares this insight, “In order to believe your value, you have to understand that God made you and He doesn’t create junk. If God created man in his image, then I am immeasurably amazing and one of a kind.” He continues, “In our industry there are specific looks that are on TV and you may say, ‘If I don’t look like this then I’m not worth anything.’ When in actuality it’s the exact opposite. It’s your uniqueness and your distinction that will not only make you valuable to others but memorable.”

Growing up Roberts wanted to be a child psychologist and in a way, as a pastor he is doing what he set out to do. “Some times your purpose or your calling is hidden in a way that you can only give expression or context to it based on what you’ve seen. I didn’t know that preachers for the most part, to a certain degree are some sort of therapist. In terms of dealing with children, we are all God’s children so it was my calling stirring. I just didn’t know what context to put it in. I always knew I wanted to help people and thank God I’m finally able to do that.”

He’s continuing to help the growing population of entertainment aspirants in his congregation by establishing the Artist Resource Center (ARC). The ARC is a not-for-profit organization that provides artists with the tools and knowledge to grow in their craft, with practical training in both the creative and the business sides of the entertainment industry. On how the venue was actualized Roberts said, “A vision was placed on my heart as I began to grow One Church International. The young artists had few opportunities out there to help them grow and achieve greatness. I thought if I was going to be a good pastor and a good spiritual father, I need to do more than just preach on Sunday morning. I need to create something that empowers their life so they don’t have to go through the turns, bumps and bruises of their predecessors.” The North Hollywood location of the ARC includes a computer lab, film editing suite, conference room as well as a main area equipped to host various events and a dance studio is forthcoming.

When asked how a project of this magnitude came together Roberts says, “I began to leverage the resources in the church. I reached out to our successful artists and paired them with aspiring artists. We have master classes where industry professionals share their knowledge and I’ve seen great results. There are so many success stories from collaborations at the ARC. People are getting jobs and careers are taking off.”

When asked about his goals for One Church in the New Year, Roberts says, “I want to continue to produce content that expresses the contemporary version of faith. If I can leverage my influence in arts and entertainment to become God’s megaphone into the culture, then that’s what I’m going to do. I plan to better utilize all of the resources that God has placed in my life. We’re working to create a new sound that goes out into the world and says, God is real, purpose is real and you matter. If you bring all of those things together we can create impactful change amongst this generation.”