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Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby. Photo: Stefan Rousseau/PA Images via Getty Images

The Church of England's Ethical Investment Advisory Group plans to review over the next year whether its holdings in Big Tech firms are compatible with Christianity, the Telegraph reports.

Why it matters: The review will help determine whether the church's $15.6 billion investment fund should back companies like Amazon, Facebook and Google, which are pursuing artificial intelligence and robotics.

What they're saying: A source close to the review told the Telegraph some church officials are worried that the technology is “akin to playing God."

  • “If all of your philosophical frameworks assume the primacy of the person, and the primacy of God’s revelation ... and a piece of tech emerges that enables one to rethink the role of the mind, what’s at stake is your whole ethical foundation, theological foundation and the very idea of God," the source said.

The big picture: Google’s owner Alphabet Inc. has been one of the church's most valuable equity holdings over the past two years, and Amazon was among the top 20 most valuable holdings in 2017, according to Bloomberg.

  • In the past, Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby, the most senior cleric in the Church of England, denounced the gig economy as “evil."
  • He has also claimed that Amazon and other tech companies are “leeching off” the U.K. by avoiding taxes.

Go deeper:

Go deeper

Restaurant software meets the pandemic moment

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

Food delivery companies have predictably done well during the pandemic. But restaurant software providers are also having a moment as eateries race to handle the avalanche of online orders resulting from severe in-person dining restrictions.

Driving the news: Olo filed last week for an IPO and Toast is rumored to be preparing to do the same very soon.

Bryan Walsh, author of Future
2 hours ago - Technology

How the automation economy can turn human workers into robots

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

More than outright destroying jobs, automation is changing employment in ways that will weigh on workers.

The big picture: Right now, we should be less worried about robots taking human jobs than people in low-skilled positions being forced to work like robots.

House passes $1.9 trillion COVID relief package

Photo: Screenshot via C-SPAN

The House approved President Biden's $1.9 trillion COVID relief package on a 219-212 vote early Saturday morning, sending it to the Senate for a possible rewrite before it gets to Biden's desk.

The big picture: The vote was a critical first step for the package, which includes $1,400 cash payments for many Americans, a national vaccination program, ramped-up COVID testing and contact tracing, state and local funding and money to help schools reopen.

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