The conservative Institute on Religion and Democracy, a Washington-based critic of mainline denominations, has elected author and philosopher J. Budziszewski as the chairman of its board of directors, succeeding theologian Thomas Oden of Drew Theological School. Budziszewski, a professor at the University of Texas at Austin, is a convert to Catholicism from the Episcopal Church but was described in an October 8 news release as “committed to renewal to Christian orthodoxy” in the mainline Protestant denominations. In another IRD news release October 7, the United Methodist Action subcommittee announced that it officially urged a “gracious exit” for Methodist congregations and pastors who want to leave the denomination long divided over whether to allow gay clergy and same-sex union rites.


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