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Bizzare But Almost Certain - AI May Replace The Clergy Too

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By Christian Webster - - 5 Mins Read
Robotic arm holding an ancient Bible
Featured Photo | Shutterstock

The introduction of AI has been able to create a shift in the workforce of the economy. Most people fear getting replaced at their jobs, while others leverage the opportunity to utilize AI.


In this situation, are there any jobs AI can’t do? Let’s find out.


Lately, research was conducted by the Department for Education Study examining the impact of systems such as ChatGPT on the jobs market. 


According to the study, individuals who work in religiously ordained professions are among the top 20 professions that are most likely to be impacted by the advancements in AI technology.


However, the study fails to consider each profession's unique characteristics and does not explain how the technology may affect each job.


The UK's Department for Education has found that the clergy is among the professions most at risk from AI. The research was conducted using a method called by Felten et al. [PDF] and applied it to a British context, with the outcome being an AI Occupational Exposure (AIOE) score.


This AIOE score allows jobs to be ranked to show which jobs are more and less likely to be impacted by advances in AI based on the abilities required to perform the job.


As of 2022, 53,140 people were employed as Clergy within the United States. This estimates < 0.001% of the employed workforce across the country.


Clergy members sitting
Clergy members | Shutterstock


The research on the jobs that AI will replace has ranked telephone salespersons, psychologists, further education teaching professionals, market and street traders and assistants, legal professionals, credit controllers, HR admin roles, PR professionals, management consultants and business analysts, market research interviewers, and local government administrative occupations above the clergy.


The former head of the Church of Scotland, Rev Albert Bogle, said that clergies should embrace AI, but the technology cannot do what humans do in an act of worship.


Other studies have found congregations are unlikely to accept robot preachers. However, some real-world examples of AI clergy have already turned out successful. 


In Germany, AI-powered sermons are already becoming a thing. As of June, 300 people attended a ceremony where the sermon was written by AI and delivered by computer-generated avatars. Some Vicars and rabbis have also started using AI to help them create sermons.


Clergy jobs ranked most exposed as one of the jobs AI will replace. However, the researchers went further to drop a disclaimer.


They explained that the estimates were based on the critical skills used in each profession, such as written comprehension and inductive reasoning, and how easily AI could replicate them.


The impact of AI has increased in the last year due to advances in systems such as ChatGPT, which is already being widely used in the workplace. It is nothing but a fact that an AI Clergy couldn’t communicate with God.


While AI can be amazing, it can't replace the human touch. AI would lack the context, emotion, and understanding that makes it meaningful without humans.