“The work of grieving is the hardest work there is. It is lonely, sickening and exhausting. Grief is the price we pay for love. It is the highest price.”
—Rabbi Earl Grollman
“Grief can be the garden of compassion. If you keep your heart open through everything, your pain can become your greatest ally in your life's search for love and wisdom.”
- 207-208 Divinity Hall
- Phone: 617.496.7540
A weekly deep-listening drop-in group that meets during the academic year, Life Raft is for any HDS student who is carrying a burden such as grief, worry, chronic illness, despair, or stress of any kind and is seeking a place to be seen, heard, and honored. Facilitated by the Chaplain and the Chaplain Interns. Life Raft is not a therapy group but a space of recognition, regard, and respect. Students in need of clinical services are strongly encouraged to reach out to CAMS at HUHS in addition to utilizing such supplemental supports as this group.
The HDS Office of Ministry Studies employs part-time denominational counselors who serve the needs of several particular faith communities at the Divinity School.
Harvard Chaplains is the umbrella organization of 38 chaplains representing 26 of the world’s traditions, united in their commitment to serving Harvard’s diverse student communities.
The Memorial Church Grief Group for Students
The Memorial Church holds a Grief Support Group for students each term. The group is limited to 10 participants. If you are interested in being a part of the Grief Support Group, please contact the Reverend Alanna Copenhaver at firstname.lastname@example.org or 617.496.1426.
The sites below are maintained by organizations external to Harvard Divinity School; their inclusion here does not necessarily imply endorsement by HDS. If you know of other resources that you think should be considered for inclusion on this page, please email the Office of the Chaplain and Religious and Spiritual Life.
Mount Auburn Hospital offers three eight-week-long bereavement support groups series a year. Each series will meet for eight Wednesday evenings, 6–7:30 pm in the Clough Conference Room.
Any adult who has experienced the death of someone close is welcomed. Participants have experienced the death of a spouse or partner, child, sibling, friend, or other relative. Contact
Beth Loomis, director of pastoral care, at email@example.com or 617.575.8606.
- Meeting information: first Tuesday of each month 6–7:30 pm
- Trinity Church of Boston (Parish House, Lower Level Room A)
- 206 Clarendon Drive, Boston, MA 02116
- firstname.lastname@example.org or 617.539.6424
Bereavement support groups are offered several times a year in various locations. There is no charge for the group, but registration is required.
- On Point, WBUR: How We Grieve January 2, 2015 (episode)
- GriefNet.org: An internet community of people dealing with grief, death, and loss
- Actively Moving Forward (AMF): College students supporting one another in grieving the illness or death of a loved one
- GriefShare.org: A website that provides listings of local grief support groups
- The Dougy Center: The national center for grieving children and families
- Center for Loss and Life Transition: Articles and book excerpts
- Hold the Door for Others: A detailed PDF workbook on “Finding Your Way Through Loss and Sudden Adversity”
- Association for Death Education and Counseling (ADEC): Resources on coping with loss
- Help Guide: Coping with Grief and Loss
- Hampshire College’s Grief Resources Bibliography (PDF): Extensive bibliography of books organized by subtopic and audience
- Six Tips for Dealing with Grief and Loss in Recovery
- The Grieving Person's Bill of Rights
- Helpful Tips for Grieving College Students