Skip to main content
MenuSearch & Directory

Elizabeth Sweeny Block, Ph.D.

Associate Professor of Christian Ethics
Theological Studies

Courses Taught

Christian Ethics; Sex, Gender, and Christian Ethics; Ethics of Technology; Freedom of Conscience; Christian Theology Introduction (graduate); Feminist Theology (graduate)


Ph.D. in Religious Ethics, The University of Chicago Divinity School, 2013
M.T.S., Emory University's Candler School of Theology, 2003
B.A. in Theology and Psychology, Georgetown University, 2001

Research Interests

  • Moral theology
  • Moral anthropology
  • Catholic ethics
  • Conscience
  • Social sin
  • Gender


Publications and Media Placements


The Engaged Conscience: Moral Agency in a Broken World, in progress

Essays and Journal Articles

What Does God Reveal in Transgender Bodies? A Conversation on Catholic Teaching and Gender.” America. February 2023.

Conversation: How Should Catholics Think about Gender Identity and Transgender Persons?” America. November 2022.

“Moral Freedom and Transgender Identity,” Journal of the Society of Christian Ethics 41, no. 2 (Fall/Winter 2021): 331-347

“Moral Intuition, Social Sin, and Moral Vision: Attending to the Unconscious Dimensions of Morality and Igniting the Moral Imagination,” Religions 12, no. 5 (2021): 1-15.

“White Privilege and the Erroneous Conscience: Rethinking Moral Culpability and Ignorance,” Journal of the Society of Christian Ethics 39, no. 2 (Fall/Winter 2019): 357-374 
“A Call to Action: Global Moral Crises and the Inadequacy of Inherited Approaches to Conscience,” Journal of the Society of Christian Ethics 37, no. 2 (Fall/Winter 2017): 79-96 

Book Chapters

“Moral Struggle.” In Blackwell Encyclopedia of Religious Ethics, Vol. 3: Moral Issues, edited by William Schweiker, 1091-1097. Wiley-Blackwell, 2022. 

“Embodied Formation, Embodied Cognition: Incorporating Neuroscientific Findings into Conscience Formation.” In Conscience and Catholic Education: Theology, Administration, and Teaching, edited by David DeCosse and Kevin Baxter, 45-60. Maryknoll, NY: Orbis Press, 2022. 

“Conscience.” In T&T Clark Handbook of Christian Ethics, edited by Tobias Winright, 71-82. London: T & T Clark, 2021.

Honors and Awards

  • Nominated for CAS Service Excellence Award, 2022
  • Nominated for CAS Excellence in Graduate Mentoring Award, 2021
  • Mellon Faculty Development Award, 2018, 2019, 2022
  • Emerging Scholar in Religious Ethics, Duquesne University Center for Catholic Faith and Culture, 2018-2020

Professional Organizations and Associations

  • American Academy of Religion
  • Catholic Theological Society of America
  • Society of Christian Ethics