What a sham and a shame! This is exactly the kind of thing that gives Roman Catholic ammunition and embarrasses the Lutherans before the world. Such goofiness might be written off but it is undertaken by those who claim to be serious Lutherans. Say it ain't so!!!
The report from The Mirror:
Robot ‘preacher’ can beam light from its hands and give automated blessings to worshippers
A robot ‘preacher’ that beams lights from its hands and can give automated blessings to the faithful has been launched in
the town that gave fame to Martin Luther and the Protestant Reformation.
Five hundred years after Luther published the Ninety-five Theses in
Wittenberg, kicking off the Reformation, an evangelical church launched a
unique automated blessing robot for the special celebrations in the
historic town located in the German state of Saxony-Anhalt.
The robot on show in the old town of Wittenberg is called “BlessU-2”
and was developed by the Evangelical Church in Hesse and Nassau.
It consists of a metal box with a touch screen, two arms on the side, a head with eyes and a digital mouth at the top.
After the robot wishes users a “warm welcome”, it asks them if they want to be blessed by a male or female voice.
It then asks the believer “what blessing do you want”, which results
in the robot making a mechanical sound as it raises its arms to the
heavens and starts to smile.
Lights then start to flash in the robot’s arms as it says “God bless and protect you” and recites a biblical verse.
After the blessing, the user has the possibility to print the dictum.
Church spokesman Sebastian von Gehren said: “It is an experiment that is supposed to inspire discussion.”
Von Gehren explained that they consciously decided against a typical human appearance.
He said that the reactions vary wildly. “One half thinks it’s great” while “the other cannot imagine a blessing from a machine.”
Is VILE too mild? This makes a mockery of the whole idea of a blessing. This is the sort of thing that comes to the minds of those who think faith is a joke.
The particular blessing spoken in the video was the Aaronic benediction of Numbers 6. Nothing in the bizarre facial expressions of the robot corresponded to the words being spoken. As the young people say nowadays: epic FAIL.
Its not funny at all. Rather than prayer and asking for a blessing how about we all just install an app on our phone that will bless us anytime we need the warm fuzzies! It can turn on your camera flash just like the light from the robot hand........
I can't express how,much sarcasm I am using right now.
Modernity will kill any tradition.
The robot is associated with the Evangelical (Prussian Union) Church in Germany (Evangelische Kirche in Deutschland), which has pastrixes and has long since left Lutheranism.
kovfefe or covfefe - Truly a robot minister has tons of kovfefe to bless you with...LOL
Functionally, all the protestant state churches in Germany are Union churches under the umbrella term "Evangelical." Those state churches that were historically Lutheran will have the appellation of "Evangelical-Lutheran." Those that are traditionally Reformed (Swiss Reformaton, Calvinists, etc., German "reformierte.") will use the appellation of "Evangelical-Reformed. You have similar naming for the various sects, i.e. Evangelical Baptist, Evangelical Methodist, etc. The Union church mentioned in this article as the maker of the robot blesser, is the one in the German state of Hesse-Nassau, traditionally a reformierte area of Germany. That is, not Lutherans, but followers of the Swiss Reformation. Though, most of Hesse went with the Swiss, there were enclaves and exclaves of Lutherans in and around Hesse-Nassau. When in the 19th Century, the Brandenburg Hohenzollerns, a Calvinist dynasty seated at Berlin, gradually gathered most of the small German states into the new German Empire, they forced the union of all the Lutherans and Calvinists in each territory. This was fine with the Calvinists because they had always maintained that there were no significant differences between Luther and Calvin/Zwingli.
Wittenberg is not in the German state of Hesse-Nassau, not even close, so one notices immediately that there is a jurisdiction issue. What are the Hessians doing making robots for Wittenberg, they're not even Lutherans. Well, Wittenberg is not in the German state of Saxony either. Saxony was/is historically one of the Lutheran states and the Evangelical union church there now uses the name, Evangelical Lutheran (Ev-Luth). Leipzig, Dresden, Zwikau, are in Saxony, but not Wittenberg, and yes, those unionizing Hohenzollerns at Berlin made that happen.
Albrecht of Brandenburg, a Hohenzollern prince-archbishop at the time of the Reformation, ruled a church state that extended from Halberstadt-Magdeburg down to Halle near Leipzig. His primary residence was a large complex at Halle, where Luther sent his correspondences to him. Over the following centuries, his dynastic family at Berlin gained control/jurisdiction of this little church state. In one of the many land-grabbing wars of the Hohenzollerns (Friedrich the Great, etc.) Wittenberg was captured and removed from Saxony to the new German state of Saxony-Anhalt, a perfect rump state just right for unionizing, because almost as soon as Luther was lowered into his grave, almost all of the little princelings of the various Anhalt enclaves and exclaves converted to rock solid Calvinists, even before the Hohenzollerns did. So today, the church jurisdiction of Wittenberg is the Union church of Mittle-Deutschland that includes many former Lutheran areas in Thuringia and the Harz mountain region, and the Calvinists areas of Anhalt. It is new since the MauerFall in about 1990, so neither the Lutheran nor Reformed appellation is used of the area.
The Lutheran state church in Germany is totally compromised as an organization and as a confession. The best functional title for the various non-catholic state churches in Germany would be "peoples' churches." Departments of the government that provide popular religious services to the people. I find it most helpful to think of the Lutheran church in Germany as having expired by 1800 with a whimpering collapse when Napoleon applied the final shove over the edge. These united people are the robot makers.
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