The Role of Reconciliation, Memory, and Theology in Shaping the Public Stage

Event Date: Wednesday February 27, 2019
Time: 2:00 - 3:30 p.m.
Location: Braun Room, Harvard Divinity School, Cambridge, MA

The Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School is pleased to co-sponsor, with the Religion and the Practice of Peace Initiative at Harvard Divinity School,

The Role of Reconciliation, Memory, and Theology in Shaping the Public Stage


Rev. Dr. Gary Mason

Founder & Director, Rethinking Conflict


Moderator & Discussant
David N. Hempton

Dean of the Faculty of Divinity
Alonzo L. McDonald Family Professor of Evangelical Theological Studies; John Lord O’Brian Professor of Divinity at Harvard Divinity School


Wednesday, February 27, 2019
2:00 – 3:30 p.m.
Harvard Divinity School

Braun Room, Andover Hall

Harvard Divinity School, Cambridge, MA

Space is limited, please register here.

About the event:

Much has been written about the Northern Ireland peace process, particularly on securing the peace. However, as Senator George Mitchell commented in relation to the Good Friday agreement, “If you think getting this agreement was difficult, implementing it will be even more difficult.” Twenty-one years after the signing of the Good Friday agreement, those have proven to be prophetic words. Dr. Mason will explore what reconciliation looks like in a contested space, the power of memory and story in keeping the pain of the past alive, and how theology can move into that contested narrative in a way that brings about dialogue, honesty, and healing. He will also address the current Brexit situation, exploring how Brexit has been a very difficult experience for these two islands.

About the speaker:

Rev. Dr. Gary Mason founded Rethinking Conflict after thirty years of on-the-ground peace building in a conflicted society in Northern Ireland. In his career, he has been based about 200 meters from the peace walls that divided Catholic and Protestant communities in Belfast. He played a leading role in establishing the Skainos project in inner city Belfast, a world class urban social justice center, developed in a post-conflict society as a model of coexistence and shared space.

Dr. Mason is a Senior Research Fellow at the Kennedy Institute for Conflict Intervention at Maynooth University in Ireland, and an adjunct Professor at the Candler School of Theology at Emory University in Atlanta. He holds a PhD from the School of Psychology at the University of Ulster. He was awarded an honorary Doctor in Divinity from Florida Southern College for his role in peace building in Ireland. He completed his theological studies at Queens University and holds a Bachelor’s in Business Studies from the University of Ulster.

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