The Future of Faith: AI-Driven Mass in a German Church

June 14, 2023

In a fusion of spirituality and technology, a German Lutheran Church recently held a 40-minute mass devised by AI language model, ChatGPT. Spearheaded by theologian Jonas Simmerlein, AI tools like ChatGPT, D-ID, and VoiceAI were used to create AI-generated avatars that conducted the service at St. Paul's Church in Fuerth, Bavaria.

Responses from the 300 congregants were mixed. Some found the AI-led service lacking "heart and soul," while others, like Lutheran pastor Marc Jansen, appreciated the innovative approach. This experiment echoes a previous one in 2019 when an AI-driven android called Kannon Mindar was introduced at Kyoto's Kodaiji temple to recite Buddhist prayers, suggesting an emerging trend of intertwining technology and spiritual practices.

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