Christchurch South Parish
St Marks Somerfield
OUR CORE VALUES:
CHRISTCHURCH SOUTH METHODIST PARISH DETAILS:
St Marks Church and Hall
CnrBarrington & Somerfield Streets, Somerfield, Christchurch 8024
See Map at the bottom of this web page.
PRESBYTER: REV ANDREW DONALDSON
C/- Parish Office, 27 Remuera Ave, Cashmere, Christchurch 8022
Phone:+64 (03) 980 5002
SUNDAY December 3rd 10 a.m. Geoff Trotter, Youth Service
7 p.m. Contemplative Service lead by Andrew Donaldson
SUNDAY December 10th 10 a.m. Rev Andrew Donaldson and Steadfast Band
SUNDAY December 17th 10 a.m. Rev Andrew Donaldson
Gillian Southley from C.W.S.
7 p.m. Fr John Craddick
Combined Advent Ecumenical Service
Dutch Choir. Supper to follow.
SUNDAY December 24th 10 a.m. Rev Andrew Donaldson
6 p.m. Children's Christmas Service
Supper to follow
CHRISTMAS DAY 10 a.m. Rev Andrew Donaldson
SUNDAY January 7th 10 a.m. Stephen Chambers - Favourite Carols
7 p.m. Cherryl Brown - Contemplative Service
SUNDAY January 14th 10 a.m. Rev Andrew Donaldson
SUNDAY January 21st 10 a.m. Rev Andrew Donaldson
SUNDAY January 28th 10 a.m. Rev Andrew Donaldson
Annual Meeting after Service
PRESBYTER'S RAMBLINGS FOR DECEMBER / JANUARY:
I've been doing some more thinking about artificial intelligence and some of the theological implications for people of faith. In this brief document I have only questions and very few, if any answers. This time thinking about ethics and moral agency John Sullins in his paper "The Ambiguous Ethical Status of Autonomous Robots" argues that there are two distinct classes of robot technologies, telerobotics (machines operated by humans) and autonomous robotics (machines operating under their own programming.
Machines operated by humans are relatively simple to assign ethical behaviour and responsibility. The moral agent is the person operating the robot. Would some mechanised tasks ever be undertaken by anything other than a telerobitic machine? For example,
should a war machine capable of killing and causing destruction be autonomous or should
they always be operated by a human with decision making clearly the responsibility of the operator?
Autonomous robotics are more complicated. Initially the ethical or moral responsibility
would lie with the programmer of the robot. But as machines learn and independently
develop the issue becomes a major concern.
At a recent meeting of the Durham Street Theology Group we discussed the issue of morality.
We also explored the question would an autonomous self-aware machine have a soul? An interesting question and more so as human beings become mechanised themselves. Does
a person with a new metallic hip somehow lessen the value of his or her soul? As our technology develops and our machines become more biological in make up the question becomes more interesting. When we create a self-aware, learning biological life form does that machine have a soul? If so, would the Church's populist theology of atonement have any resonance with the biological machine?
Would they look to us or God for their salvation?
One final question. Do we imbue the self-aware, learning, autonomous biological machine with ethical parameters?
Interestingly some would argue that this would be a mistake.
Phone +64 3 982 5002