If you pay a visit to the German town of Wittenberg, you can receive a blessing from a priest—except in Wittenberg, .
To be fair, there are human priests in Wittenberg, too, but the Protestant church in Hesse and Nassau recently built a robot priest to give blessings as part of a celebration of the 500th anniversary of the Reformation. The robot, named "BlessU-2," has a touchscreen, glowing hands, and can forgive your sins in five different languages.
According to , beyond just relieving the workload of busy priests, the robot is meant to start a debate about the future of technology and the church. Five hundred years ago in the same town, Martin Luther nailed his "95 Theses" to the church door, and technology in the form of the printing press spread his ideas across the continent.
Five centuries later and new technology continues to shape our entire society, including our religions, in dramatic ways. How will the church adapt? Only time will tell.