When Apple AAPL CEO Tim Cook recently announced he is gay, he wrote, “I consider being gay among the greatest gifts God has given me.” Cook is not forthcoming beyond that statement about his religious beliefs, probably because people have strong opinions about how appropriate it is for executives to discuss their personal beliefs.

Most CEOs, in fact, keep their faith squarely out of the workplace, according to Andrew Wicks, a professor of business administration at the University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business. “They specifically hide their religious faith, precisely because they fear people making a big deal out of their religious views,” said Wicks, who teaches a course called “Faith, Religion, and Responsible Decision Making.”

But Wicks says being open about faith is actually important because it is a powerful aspect of how business leaders define themselves.

These 7 executives don’t all share the same religious convictions – but they all say they are informed and inspired by faith and spirituality, both inside and outside the boardroom.