» Our History

Founded in 1981, the IRD has been a voice for transparency, for renewal, and for Christian orthodoxy. In the words of theologian and IRD board member Thomas Oden, we “are not presuming to create new doctrine but hold firmly to apostolic teaching in ways especially pertinent to current circumstances. The theology is orthodox, reliable, stable, beautiful, familiar, and glorious. By it the church has been blessed by God for two thousand years.”

Our historic ties with renewal efforts in the mainline denominations along with our connection to the broader evangelical movement give us a unique and comprehensive perspective on Protestant American church life and social witness.

Writings on the Institute on Religion & Democracy:

Reflections on IRD 
by Richard John Neuhaus
The late Rev. Richard John Neuhaus, distinguished Christian writer, Catholic priest, former Lutheran pastor, and an IRD founder, addressed the IRD board outside Washington, D.C. in October 2005, following the death of IRD President Diane Knippers. This is a transcript of his remarks.

Mark Tooley Remarks to the IRD Board, March 14
by Mark Tooley
IRD President Mark Tooley’s remarks made to the IRD board of directors, Spring 2010.



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