These church traditions are clearly reflected in Drury University's commitments to critical thinking, the value of diversity, the integration of the theoretical with the practical, and the liberation of all persons to participate responsibly in and contribute to life in a global community.
- Both the United Church of Christ and the Disciples of Christ traditions value a reasoned and critical approach to faith that remains open to the best insights of each generation’s intellectual endeavors. Drury is unlike some church-related institutions that encourage students to choose the authority of the Bible over the understanding provided by modern sciences and the humanities. For both traditions, the nature of the Divine is sought through the revelation of faith and the discoveries of critical reason. As the UCC claims, "..the study of the scriptures is not limited by past interpretations, but it is pursued with the expectation of new insights and God's help for living today."
- Both traditions are committed to a liberating vision. The UCC has a long tradition of progressive social action. This tradition seeks to embody Jesus’ call "to announce good news to the poor; to proclaim release for prisoners..." and is at the heart of decades of progressive action. The UCC was one of the first denominations to work for the ordination of women and is involved in the continuing struggle for racial, gender, and ethnic inclusion and in the search for alternatives to violence and the elimination of poverty.
- The DOC tradition emphasizes the integration of the theoretical and the practical. Leaders in this movement were influenced by the 18th century Scottish School of Common Sense that stressed a pragmatic approach to the understanding of moral and religious experience.
- The DOC is known for its commitment to the ecumenical movement. According to one of its founders, the unity of Christians was the "polar star" of the church. This emphasis on unity is more recently evident in the church’s attention to more sensitive relationships with persons of other faiths.