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Understanding Religion and Public Life

Harvard Divinity School launched this week Religion and Public Life (RPL), a new initiative and degree program with the core mission to advance the public understanding of religion in service of a just world at peace. The master of religion and public life (MRPL) is the first new degree program at HDS in 50 years, since it introduced the master of theological studies.

Recent News

A soldier stands guard at Kandahar Air Base in Afghanistan on December 8, 2013. REUTERS/Mark Wilson/Pool.

Could the U.S. Government Take Nonviolence Seriously?

September 3, 2021

Peacebuilding efforts need to take into account a region’s religious landscape . . . Baked into the international system and into diplomacy, especially in the West, is a great deal of simplistic and often biased thinking about religion. . . . Religion is complicated and not inherently a positive or negative element in violent disputes,” said Susan Hayward, associate director of the religious literacy and the professions initiative at HDS.


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Diane Moore speaks on religion and public life

Divinity School Launches New Degree Programs

August 19, 2021

Harvard Divinity School long focused on preparing religious leaders and training religious scholars, this fall adds a third mission. It is launching its first new master’s degree program in more than 50 years, the master of religion and public life (MRPL), a comprehensive program of training professionals for practice in other realms.

Religion and Public Life

Religion and Public Life Announces 2021-22 Fellows

June 11, 2021

Religion and Public Life at Harvard Divinity School (HDS) today announced its 2021-22 fellows. This inaugural cohort of expert practitioners bring deep expertise and social justice commitments to a range of professions (government, education, journalism, organizing, and media and entertainment) and issues (racial justice, climate change, immigration advocacy, and Native and Indigenous rights).

The 2021-22 Religion and Public Life Fellows will join HDS in the fall to help launch the new...

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 A collection of engaging resources from Harvard Divinity School on the intersection of religion and public life.