Ray Pennings

Executive Vice President


Ray Pennings co-founded Cardus in 2000 and currently serves as Executive Vice President, working out of the Ottawa office. Ray has a vast amount of experience in Canadian industrial relations and has been involved in public policy discussions and as a political activist at all levels of government. Ray is a respected voice in Canadian politics, contributing as a commentator, pundit and critic in many of Canada’s leading news outlets and as an advisor and strategist on political campaign teams.

Ray completed a degree in History at McMaster University and obtained a Master of Arts in Religion degree from Puritan Theological Seminary. He has led a number of large research projects at Cardus over the years and was lead author on Death is Natural: Reframing the End-of-Life Conversation in Canada. In addition to authoring Cardus reports and columns he has also written chapters in several publications including Church and Caesar (RHB, 2004), Living for God’s Glory (RHB, 2011), Calvin the Revolutionary (RHB, 2010), Religious Liberty and the Law (Routledge, 2017), and The Handbook of School Choice (Wiley-Blackwell, 2017).

Ray’s grasp of applied public theology is evident not only through his writings, but through his volunteer efforts as well. He was founding president of EduDeo (formerly Worldwide Christian Schools) and has served as Chair on the board of Redeemer University College, and as a board member for the Civitas Society and the Rosebud School for the Arts. Ray currently sits on the adjudication committee for the Redeemer Centre for Christian Scholarship and on the Champions Circle for Compassionate Ottawa. Ray and his wife, Kathy, have one adult son.

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Press Releases

Media Coverage

Which unprincipled party will you be voting for?
Oct 17, 2019
Election issues that matter to religious voters
Sep 26, 2019
Election news has outdated ideas about social conservatives
Sep 4, 2019
Independent schools contribute to the public good and deserve public support
Aug 12, 2019
Investing in family and faith to minimize social isolation
Jul 4, 2019
Can education help end America's culture war?
Apr 24, 2019
Why it might be OK to talk about religion at the dinner table
Dec 28, 2018
The Judeo-Christian roots of Canadian culture - What is Canadian culture?
Dec 10, 2018
Cardus talks about Ontario’s independent schools and provincial support
Oct 26, 2018
A commitment to diversity must include room for faith
Sep 18, 2018
Why immigrants still see a place for God (or gods!) in Canadian public life
Jul 9, 2018
Ray Pennings - Faith in Canada: A Religious Consensus
Jun 23, 2018
Ray Pennings on CFRA Ottawa
Jan 23, 2018
Trudeau Bans Anti-Abortion Groups from Summer Jobs Funding
Jan 18, 2018
Ray Pennings on the John Gormley Show
Jan 17, 2018
Ray Pennings on the Evan Solomon Show
Jan 11, 2018
Religious Freedom in the 2018 Spotlight
Dec 30, 2017
Giving Voice to Religion Might Create a Better Canada
Dec 5, 2017
Canada's First Christian Law School Pleads Case to Supreme Court
Nov 30, 2017
Ray Pennings with Andrew Lawton on AM980 CFPL
Nov 22, 2017
Ray Pennings on CKNW Radio with Charles Adler
Nov 18, 2017
Ray Pennings: The Canadians who most embrace this country's diversity are the religious
Nov 16, 2017
Governor General Payette's Comments on Religious Faith
Nov 3, 2017
Few Same Sex Marriages, Religious Freedom Concerns
Aug 14, 2017
Ray Pennings: Don't overlook the contribution faith has made to Canada's first 150 years
Jun 29, 2017
The Important Role Of Faith In Canada's History
Jun 13, 2017
Are Canadians More Religious Than We Think?
May 17, 2017
Ray Pennings: It is time to change the narrative around religion in Canada
Apr 13, 2017
Would Trudeau's rejection of a coalition withstand the pressure to remove Harper from office?
Aug 28, 2015
Ray Pennings on 570 News: Institutions need to maintain their identities
Aug 7, 2015
Ray Pennings in National Post: Is the age-old debate between order and freedom essentially resolved?
Jul 8, 2015
Social Conservatism, Diversity, and a Future
Jul 7, 2015
Opinion: A continuum of care, before a natural death
May 7, 2015
Ray Pennings on End-of-Life Poll
Apr 28, 2015
Budget 2015
Apr 21, 2015
Time for mature conversation about the end of life
Feb 20, 2015
Do Christian Schools Produce Good Citizens? The Evidence Says Yes.
Sep 17, 2014
Milke and Van Pelt: Why private schools should receive equal funding
Aug 3, 2014
Critics keen to put Christian law school out of business
May 7, 2014
Cardus mentioned in The Walrus
May 1, 2014
Ray Pennings says: Don't be afraid of religious schools
Apr 16, 2014
Pennings: You have nothing to fear from religious schools
Apr 16, 2014
'Boring' budget positions Tories for 2015 election debate
Feb 12, 2014
Cardus teams with Notre Dame University on education study
Jun 10, 2013
Calgary City Soul project covered in ChristianWeek.Org
May 16, 2013
Reports of faith's demise are greatly exaggerated
Apr 24, 2013
Pennings quoted in OACS News Service
Apr 17, 2013
Survey finds faith is lacking for some
Oct 29, 2012
Alternative school grads more civic-minded: report
Oct 17, 2012
Ray Pennings is interviewed by Michael Coren for Sun News
Sep 26, 2012
Christians lead the way for volunteer hours
Jul 4, 2012
Union scrutiny bill flawed
May 15, 2012
Sorry for my unenlightened views on abortion
May 4, 2012
Who will replace "the church ladies"?
Jan 27, 2012
Let’s let religion out of the closet
Jan 9, 2012
Pennings: City hall shows willingness to nurture faith
Dec 10, 2011
Calgary Herald editorial on making room for worship in the city
Oct 24, 2011
Pennings on CBC Radio to talk about Calgary City Soul
Oct 11, 2011
Institutions of faith help define Calgary
Oct 11, 2011
Canada's Coming Decade of Dissensus
Oct 4, 2011
In Alberta, are "conservatives" dead as a dodo?
Sep 29, 2011
Where is Free Speech Heading in Canada
Sep 9, 2011
Christian Post covers Cardus education survey
Aug 22, 2011
Don't blame religion for Anders Breivik
Jul 28, 2011
NHL draft reveals society's suspicion of faith
Jul 6, 2011
Cardus' Budget Analysis covered in the B.C. Catholic: "Proposed federal budget leaves much to be desired, says critics"
Jun 17, 2011
Cardus June 2011 Budget Analysis: Dissent on Deck
Jun 6, 2011
Protestant, Catholic graduates differ
May 29, 2011
Are Christian School Graduates World-Changers?
May 20, 2011
Pennings interviewed at Ipolitics.ca on Easter polls
Apr 21, 2011
Cardus releases 2011 Canadian federal budget analysis
Mar 22, 2011
Organization conducts study in search of Calgary's soul
Feb 14, 2011
Work and Love in the Global Village: Responding to Caritas in Veritate
Dec 7, 2010
Vital part of Potash decision is it was Saskatchewan's
Nov 18, 2010
"The Bow" symbol of Calgary aspirations, end of bitter N.E.P. memories
Nov 17, 2010
Great cities need leadership, resources and spirit
Oct 22, 2010
Calgary City Soul project launches Phase 1.
Oct 20, 2010
Calgary Herald covers launch of Cardus Centre for Cultural Renewal
Oct 16, 2010
The Wildrose shot heard "round Alberta“ and Ottawa
Oct 8, 2010
Will Alberta's cowboys soon bite the dust?
Jul 15, 2010
Religion not the only source of division
Jul 2, 2010
Religious faith is the civic oxygen of our social ecology
Jun 2, 2010
Cardus' 2010 Federal Budget Analysis: Long-Term Talk Masks Short-Term Thinking
Mar 4, 2010
After the Throne Speech: Cardus Staff Respond
Mar 3, 2010
Canadian society needs silent partners
Mar 1, 2010
Time for Alberta to cowboy up
Feb 22, 2010
Save our culture of giving
Jan 12, 2010
Charity stands at Canada's core
Nov 28, 2009
Most of the Giving Done by Few Canadians
Nov 24, 2009
Is the empire Peter Lougheed built about to fall?
Oct 6, 2009
The Hutterite driver's-licence ruling misses the big picture
Aug 21, 2009
Berlin learns from sad past
Jul 24, 2009
Bloc's Stranglehold on our Politics will End
Jul 19, 2009
New Downtown Needs Churches, Cardus Says
Apr 4, 2009
Arts education might have averted crisis
Feb 26, 2009
Cardus: Stimulus Package Requires More Than Money
Jan 27, 2009
Cardus' 2009 Federal Budget Analysis: Stimulus Package Requires More than Money
Jan 27, 2009
Canada's charities need a stimulus package, too
Jan 22, 2009
Charities want Harper to Increase Tax Credit, Toronto Star covers Cardus Budget Proposal
Jan 20, 2009
Economic stimulus and not for profits
Jan 17, 2009
News Release: Cardus Recommends Increasing Charitable Credit as part of Stimulus Package
Jan 15, 2009
Cardus Releases Backgrounder on Increasing Charitable Tax Credits
Jan 15, 2009
Journal of Commerce covers "Why is Construction in Ontario so Expensive?"
Dec 11, 2008
Daily Commercial News on "Why is Construction so Expensive in Ontario?"
Dec 4, 2008
Fix Ontario's construction labour laws
Nov 26, 2008
Duceppe's Home-Ice Advantage
Oct 29, 2008
'Me!' generation too selfish to vote?
Oct 5, 2008
Character, competence and conviction
Oct 1, 2008
Why don't we want to vote?
Sep 26, 2008
Finding room, a role for spirituality: Religion needs to carve out space in city life
Sep 21, 2008
Our Impressions of Canada often Miss the Mark
Sep 21, 2008
More Behind Democracy Than Just Voting
Jul 27, 2008
Architecture Should Better Reflect Our Values
Jul 2, 2008
Selling Canada, Asset by Asset
May 30, 2008
Economics More Metaphysical than Mathematical
May 25, 2008
The Church Outside In
May 1, 2008
Blurring of Private and Public Speech Threatens Candour
Apr 27, 2008
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.: Legacy or Metaphor?
Apr 4, 2008
Cardus' 2008 Federal Budget Analysis: Government Backs Canadians' Taking Responsibility
Feb 26, 2008
Feds' Sunday voting plan could backfire
Dec 16, 2007
Christian Influence in the Public Square
Nov 1, 2007
Faithful and Fruitless in Ontario: Status Quo in Education Policy
Nov 1, 2007
Cardus' 2007 Federal Budget Analysis: Bringing Advantage to Canada
Mar 19, 2007
Presentation Regarding Bill C 257
Feb 7, 2007
Support for Unions Up, Study Finds
Jan 23, 2002