Roblox is a popular video game that offers players the chance to build anything that comes into their imagination and share it with others. Similar to games like Minecraft – which Roblox predates by 5 years – Roblox presents a sandbox experience with a fanciful LEGO-adjacent aesthetic. With all these creative and wholesome elements, it should be no surprise that Catholics have been making in-game churches to spur virtual faith communities.
In Poland, it has become a recent trend for Roblox players – estimated at around 50 million users per day – to attend virtual services at the churches they have constructed. The phenomenon was a niche group at the start, but now these services (Masses, memorials, etc) have become so popular that hundreds wait in line to attend.
“Archdiocese of Gneizno” is a big Polish community, but they are not the only Roblox community that’s been dedicating itself to the divine. Another such group is the “Vatican City State of Roblox,” an active community that has been around since 2011. This group has created some excellent virtual representations of famed churches, like Westminster Cathedral in London, and the Sistine Chapel in the Vatican.
While some may find the notion of a pretend service run by unordained children to be silly or inconsequential, we find a tremendous amount of hope in their actions. As we see reports of dwindling church attendance, this trend of virtual Masses suggests that the younger generation still thirsts for faith practice. The next challenge is to figure out how to transition virtual attendees to the real pews.