An interview with Nicholas Richards, creator of religion and tech app ROHO

Photo Credit:

| April 01 2016,

00:30 am

For some of us, our mothers are always telling us we need to go to church more. But our schedules are so busy we would rather sleep in on Sundays — or  have we something to do that's... not church

Most can admit that when you're a person who practices faith and you haven't been to a service or read your word, there's an emptiness that sits in your chest. A busy life tends to push going to a weekly sermon down to the bottom of your to-do list, but what if there was a way to remedy this? Think about going to service on your daily commute, right before bed or on your break at work for fewer than 10 minutes. You know that running joke where you need something and someone says "There's an app for that?" Well, if you need to go to service for a couple of minutes real quick, "there's an app for that!" Nicholas Richards is the person behind it all

We had a chance to talk to him about his solution to your problem — ROHO

Blavity: First things first, in your own words, could you please tell us what this dope thing called ROHO is?

Nicholas Richards: ROHO is a platform that allows users on-demand access to sermons. You are able to find sermons based on the exact issue you are going through. We are adding other content soon, but we are perfecting the sermon experience first

B: What made you come up with this idea? Was it difficult to get it up and running?

NR: I’m a minister and I’ve always have a deep interest in tech. So ROHO is a natural outgrowth of my two passions, religion and tech.  Last year, I was watching a sermon on YouTube when a liquor commercial played in-between the message.  I was totally offended, and I knew I wanted to make a space to have religious content presented beautifully and special. It was incredibly hard starting out, leaving my great job as a full-time minister, but I wanted to be “all-in.” And it still is challenging. We are learning the business daily. Whether it's talking to users, investors, preachers or advertisers, there’s always something to do and fix

B: What’s been the response towards ROHO? Has it been all support or have you gotten any push back?

NR: The best response has been from users saying “Its about time something like this existed."
religion and tech app ROHO
Photo Cred: ROHO

B: Do you come from a religious background?

NR: Yeah, my dad is a preacher, so I’ve been around the church most of my life

B: Anyone with a TV or a smartphone is able to watch their favorite television preacher whenever they want. What’s the difference between ROHO and the means we have already?

NR: Other products are made for video. ROHO is made for sermons – there’s a difference. We know that sermons are special, and we build with this in mind.  ROHO allows you to access sermons that are truly made for you. You can customize the type of sermon you want to listen to, yet we also give recommendations as we get to know you better. Additionally, we take away the pain of searching numerous sites in the hopes of finding something inspirational to watch. On ROHO, all the sermons and inspiration you want are in one place – and we’re doing all of this especially for black people

B: Are you a one-man band with this or do you have a staff that helps you?

NR: Our amazing team and offices are in NYC, and we’re hiring! I spend a good amount of time nowadays talking to really smart people who love media, data and religion. I'm looking forward to seeing us expand

B: Is Roho going to provide sermons for one prominent religion or are all faiths going to be included?

NR: We’ll see… :)

B: How many languages are available with ROHO?

NR: We’re thinking about that now

B: Where do you see ROHO in the next 5 years?

NR: The ROHO app launches in Summer 2016!

B: To you, what would be the pinnacle of success for ROHO?  

NR: Building a great company that inspires the world to engage with their faith in ways they’ve only dreamed of
Interested in ROHO? Let us know in the comments!

READ NEXT: Behind the beat: songs we never read the lyrics to