Religion in Times of Earth Crisis: Apocalyptic Grief: Reckoning with Loss, Wrestling with Hope

Monday, Feb 26, 2024, 6:00 pm - 8:45 pm
Registration is required: Register_Button

This is the fourth event is a six-part series that will take place live on Zoom and is free and open to the public. Attendees must register for each event separately.

Human-caused climate change already contributes to manifold global disasters. As the planet inevitably continues to warm, these disasters will be routine and unrelenting. Addressing the reality of loss must become a basic spiritual task of our climate present and future, along with summoning the resolve to respond to all our losses. In this session, Matthew Ichihashi Potts will consider the apocalyptic roots of the Christian tradition in order both to diagnose how Christianity has contributed to the present crisis, as well as to suggest possibilities for a different way forward. Through particular attention to grief and hope as religious categories, and with specific reference to various moments and movements from within the Christian tradition, Potts will reflect upon the spiritual crisis at the heart of climate catastrophe and suggest the potential for a religious response.

Speaker: Matthew Ichihashi Potts, Plummer Professor of Christian Morals and Pusey Minister in the Memorial Church
Moderator: Diane L. Moore, Diane L. Moore, Associate Dean of Religion and Public Life

Matthew Ichihashi Potts, MDiv '08, PhD '13, was appointed the Pusey Minister in the Memorial Church and the Plummer Professor of Christian Morals in 2021. Potts has served on the faculty at Harvard Divinity School since 2013 and has focused his teaching on sacramental and moral theology, ministry and pastoral theology, religion and literature, and preaching. He is the author of two books, Cormac McCarthy and the Signs of Sacrament: Literature, Theology, and the Moral of Stories (Bloomsbury, 2015) and Forgiveness: An Alternative Account (Yale University Press, 2022). He sits on the editorial board of the journal Literature and Theology. He is also co-host of the podcast Harry Potter and the Sacred Text. Potts served as both an officer in the United States Navy and as a college administrator before being ordained a priest in the Episcopal Church.

For more information on the full series, "Religion in Times of Earth Crisis: A Series of Public Online Conversations," visit….

​​​​​​​Note: Due to scheduling challenges, we will no longer be able to offer the follow-up conversations.


Are you hosting a Harvard-affiliated event that is related to climate change and/or sustainability? Please submit your event to the Salata Institute event calendar using this quick form! We look forward to sharing your event with the Harvard community.

Submit Your Event