Episode 169: What Is AI and Should I Be Using It in My Ministry?

On this episode, we explore artificial intelligence, including its potential and its pitfalls. Can AI be a tool for good, or will it steal your pastoral touch? The answer may surprise you.

Show Notes:

  • Blog Post: Embracing AI: A Pastoral Perspective
  • Free Resource: AI Cheat Sheet Download
  • What do we mean by AI?
    • Think about it as a smart robot that lives in a computer. It learns by reading and looking at pictures so that it can then create writing and pictures of its own.
    • It’s a tool. It can be used to do great things in the hands of the right person.
      • Example: Chat GPT, is just one tool in the AI toolbox.
    • Traditional AI: Like a super-fast calculator, it can answer questions and solve problems based on what it’s already learned.
    • Generative AI: Like a creative artist, it can use its knowledge to come up with entirely new things, inspired by what it’s seen before.
  • Ministry leaders need to learn about this because it will only become more prevalent in people’s lives.
  • Whether or not we use AI is a stewardship question. We always want to be doing what only we can do. Giving something to AI is the same kind of question.
    • Sometimes, AI gets things wrong. So there is still a big component of the work being done.
    • A program can write a sermon, but it’s not ever going to be connected to a particular congregation or to what the Holy Spirit is doing through a ministry.
  • It will always be up to us to determine whether we are using AI as a tool or as a crutch.
  • Remember that AI is also great not only for writing (e.g., sermons, emails, announcements, etc.) but also for summarizing or analyzing information. For example, asking it about your budget or the results from your church survey.
  • If you’re not sure where to start, you can actually use AI as a consultant to help you learn how to use it. Ask, “How could I use you to help accomplish this task I’m working on?”
  • Contact James Warren: james.warren@ministryarchitects.com
  • Contact Rob Dyer: rob.dyer@ministryarchitects.com
  • Connect with Brandon Collins: brandoncollins.orgbrandon.collins@ministryarchitects.com
  • Connect with Renee Wilson: renee.wilson@ministryarchitects.com