[[Image:StDenysInstitute.jpg|thumb|Seal of the St. Denys Institute]]
The '''St. Denys Orthodox Theological Institute''' of Paris was founded in 1944 by members of the Cathedral of St. Irenaeus in Paris (of the [[Orthodox Church of France]]) and a number of French intellectuals who were not themselves Orthodox (the French [[Roman Catholic Church|Catholic]] philosopher Gabriel Marcel, for example, was the first registrar), and placed under the patronage of [[Saint]] [[Dionysius the Areopagite|Denys the Areopagite]]. The Institute was founded with the assistance of the [[Brotherhood of St. Photius]] and with the blessing of [[Patriarch]] [[Sergius I (Stragorodsky) of Moscow|Sergius of Moscow]]. One purpose of the Institute was to provide theological education in the French language, as all classes at the [[St. Sergius Orthodox Theological Institute (Paris, France)|St. Sergius Orthodox Theological Institute]] in Paris were, at the time, taught only in Russian. [[Vladimir Lossky]] served as dean from the founding of the Institute until 1953. During the academic year 1945-1946, two members of the St. Sergius faculty, [[Alexander Schmemann]] and Constantine Andronikoff, taught at St. Denys but the political climate of the Russian Church in Paris at the time caused them to withdraw the next year.
Although steeped in the Russian tradition from which it sprang, the Institute was oriented toward the West. It has remained close to the French academic world, drawing a number of its faculty from the University of Paris, including the Sorbonne.