In November’s monthly prayer intention, Pope Francis called on all the good Catholics of the world to “pray that the progress of robotics and artificial intelligence may always serve humankind.”
The pope’s monthly prayer intentions, published on the US Conference of Catholic Bishops’ website, was also featured in a short video clip on YouTube via Vatican News.
In his message, the pope said artificial intelligence was “at the heart of the epochal change we are experiencing,” and that robotics could empower the world if harnessed for good. He said, “if technological progress increases inequalities, it is not true progress. Future advances should be orientated towards respecting the dignity of the person.”
The pope’s prayer for ethical robots was first reported by The Verge, which comes as the Vatican, earlier this year, released “Rome Call for AI Ethics,” a conference that, according to Reuters, discussed “principles promoting the ethical use of artificial intelligence.”
With the virus pandemic catapulting the world deeper into the fourth industrial revolution, dubbed Industry 4.0 – the ongoing automation of traditional manufacturing and industrial practices, with artificial intelligence and robotics, under cover of “social distancing” has caused an unwelcoming employment crisis for the working poor, with many of their jobs displaced by robots (read: here & here).
The pope will likely be highly critical of the automation wave, crushing the world’s working poor; as he recently warned in the latest encyclical, Fratelli Tutti (All Brothers), unfettered capitalism is unstoppable.