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This is the first robot-priest, and it gives blessings in five languages

Technology helps modernise even religion: in order to celebrate 500 years from Luther’s Reform, a protestant priest in the German city of Wittenberg made a robot called BlessU-2, which can give blessings in five languages, according to The Guardian.

Stephan Krebs, a priest at the Hesse and Nassau churches, the one behind the initiative, says that he wanted to stir a debate whether it is possible to give blessings with a robot or if a human is actually necessary.

The robot has a touchscreen on its chest, two arms and one head. In the past ten days, he gave blessings in German, English, French, Spanish and Polish. The believers can also opt between a male voice or a female voice.


Krebs and his colleagues are collecting data for future tests, but they don’t expect robots to be the solution to the priest crisis in Europe.

Wittenberg is a small town located on the Elbe river. It is important because Martin Luther wrote here his 95 theses 500 years ago, against the ”indulgence” selling offered by the Catholic Church. He also claimed at the time that the Pope has no authority over the Purgatory.

The event took place on October 31st, 1517 and marked the beginning of the Protestant Reform.

BlessU-2 is not the first robot in the world of religion. Last year a Buddhist temple outside Beijing had a robot that chanted mantras and explained the basic principles in religion.

Daniel Higgson