The Hunger Games may lack a single reference to religion or God, but as Jordan J. Ballor and Todd Steen point out in an article for First Things, the books and film presents a secularized alternative to the Christian virtue of hope:
The only hope that the residents of Panem have is in themselves. The best they can hope for is that perhaps someone might repay a good deed with one in return. As readers of the novel or viewers of the film, we also want to find hope in whatever situation we encounter, real or fictional. We see flashes of goodness in people and the order in creation and believe that better things are possible. How does this hope persist in Panem or in our world? Why does the idea of hope resonate with us to such a great degree?