Since the revival in 1985, Gurukul with her motto – “Towards Bold Theological Visionhas been initiating various new thrusts as follows:

  1. Women’s Studies: Gurukul pioneered the Department of Women Studies for the first time in the theological education programme of the Senate of Serampore College (University). The vision and the key objectives of the Department is to bring gender justice and equality in both the church and society, and to empower women for participation in the life and ministry of the Church at per with men counterparts. After some years of gap, Gurukul has revived the M.Th. in Women Studies from the present academic year.
  2. Dalit Studies is another pioneering area in theology with concern for the caste-based oppressed people in India, who comprise majority in the Indian Church. A separate department of Dalit Theology is established to develop courses in Dalit Theology at the B.D., and MTh, levels and to organize seminars and consultations to highlight the issues faced by Dalits in the Indian society and the Church. Gurukul is a leading and pioneering theological institution concerned about publication of theological literature on Dalit issues.
  3. The Tribal/Adivasi Studies is a new vision and initiative of Gurukul. The issues concerning Tribal/Adivasi are studied and addressed ever since the emergence of Tribal and Adivasi Theologies in some of the theological institutions in India, and yet, considering the distinct issues facing the Tribals/Adivasis in all realms of life and how they are insignificantly represented in mainstream theological discourses in India, Gurukul envisions to offer an action oriented alternative theological reflection.
  4. Christian Communication: Though communication is primordial in nature, its theological significance and importance has been realized only during the latter half of the last century. The 21st Century is a century of Communication. The wonders of new media and its significance for building human relationship is seen in every walk of life. Hence, pastoral training needs to be given importance to this new trend, as pastors are basically communicators, whose daily activities involve in relationship building, preaching, teaching, administration, etc., and which requires better skills in communication. Gurukul responds to these challenges by introducing new and innovative courses in all aspects of communication from a Christian theological perspective.
  1. Widening Frontiers of Christian Theology (Gurukul Summer Institute) is an effort of Gurukul to engage in research and theological reflection on pertinent contextual issues of public importance by organizing a get-together of Gurukul professors, other theological educators, church leaders, development activists, social scientists, economists during summer vacations. Eleven such institutes on the subjects of specific thrusts had taken place in the past and after reviving it in 2017, another Six institutes on the theme such as Reformation, Migration, Children, Ageing, Faith and Pandemic, emotional wellbeing were organized. The research papers and the keynote addresses are published by Gurukul Publications as edited books every year. These books not only serve as materials for teaching the new courses offered at the theological institutions but also serve as conceptual and practical sources for advocacy in bringing awareness in the Church and Society.
  1. Green Theology is a reflection on the emergence of a new awareness and response to ecological crisis and promote environmental protection and climate justice. As a theological response, Green Theology aims to understand Christian doctrines and Church’s teachings in the light of ecology and environment. This another pioneering effort of Gurukul to develop courses with concern for care of the earth and aims to contextualize theological education that is relevant to the realities of our contemporary times from the perspectives of Ecology and environment.
  1. Interfaith RELATION: In a multi-faith and secular context everyone has the right to be understood and the duty to understand. It is not proper to compare the negative aspects of one religious community with the positive dimensions of another. Good understanding of our neighbours or colleagues of other faiths helps us grow in maturity. Against this background Gurukul started a programme on interfaith dialogue. Ecumenical Dialogue Centre India (EDCI), an initiative of the United Evangelical Lutheran Churches in India (UELCI) is also located on Gurukul campus with a mediation hall and Gurukul in collaboration with EDCI organises many programmes on Interfaith Dialogue and Interfaith Relations at grass root level.
  1. RURAL PASTORS IN-HOUSE TRAINING FOR A DIACONAL MINISTRY; THEOLOGICAL EDUCATION TO THE GRASSROOT AND MASTER TRAINER IN LUTHERAN IDENTITY AND CONFESSION are three new initiatives undertaken since 2019 to take the theological education to people in their respective places. The aims and objectives of the programme are: to update the pastors of various churches with new trends in theology and pastoral ministry; to connect the academia with ekklesia in general and Gurukul with congregations in particular; to teach the basics of Christian faith and theology to common believers; and to teach the Lutheran Pastors about Lutheran identity and confession in their respective places and train them to be the effective pastors with sound Lutheran theology/doctrine as well to teach the congregations about the fundamentals of Lutheran identity and confession.
  1. THEOLOGICAL EDUCATION ON THE WHEELS is yet another new initiative of Gurukul beginning from academic year 2022-2023. Under this programme, the entire BD second year students are off-campus throughout the academic year. The students are placed in two places each semester. In first semester, they are in seminary setup and in the second semester in non-seminary setup. The key aims and objectives of the programme is to provide sufficient exposure to the students to the societal and ecclesiastical realities on the ground and train them with needed pedagogical and practical skills required for koinonial and diaconal ministries of the Churches in India. Secondly, the programme aims at building a close relationship between Gurukul and Church/civil society; between Gurukul and other sister seminaries; interaction between Gurukul students and other sister seminary students. Thirdly, it also aims at mutual help between Gurukul and sister seminaries in terms of human resources and students’ learning.


Spirituality is the central focus of Gurukul. It aims at genuine and authentic spiritual formation as much as personal, academic and ministerial formations. The Schwan Memorial Chapel continues to be the centre of spiritual life in Gurukul. Gurukul chapel is an outstanding example of indigenous architecture. It is built in the form of a Mandapam. The altar is constructed as a Sumaithangi to symbolize Christ’s call to all people to place their burden on Him. It is a memorial gift of St. Paul’s Lutheran Church of Toledo, Ohio in honour of Dr. C. D. Schwan, a pastor at the congregation in Toledo and later lifelong missionary in the South Andhra Lutheran Church. The Chapel is extended and renovated in 2022, keeping the original structure intact.

It is a place of personal meditation, daily morning worship, midweek community worship, Sunday evening Community Worship. Retreats at the beginning of each semester, and on Ash Wednesday are times to strengthen our spiritual formation. Efforts are made to create awareness in the worshippers of the need to relate one’s faith to the socio-economic, political, and cultural realities of today.


The Martin Luther Library is the centre for academic excellence. The library is updated with more than 2500 books during the academic year 2021-2022. There are now more than 60,000 volumes of books, 88 periodicals, out of which 36 are in exchange of Gurukul Journal. The library too has online facility with EBSCO link. The “Online Library” was initiated and dedicated through the generous contributions of Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) with 20 work stations, where the Gurukul students, faculty as well as scholars from other seminaries, secular colleges and universities and also pastors are the beneficiaries of the library resources.



Community life is the key for enhancing personal formation, ministerial formation, spiritual formation and academic formation. Students are encouraged to engage themselves to participate in the life of the community, making the college community as a base community for theological reflection. Student activities, such as, Student Christian Movement, Social and Theological Forum, Informal Discussion Groups, Fine-arts Society, Sports and Games, Interfaith Dialogue, Celebrations of cultural and national festivals, etc., enhances the joy of the community and serves as a platform to exhibit and improve the talents and gifts of the students. Students take active part in organising various programmes under the guidance of a faculty member. 

The “Tutorial Groups” are small groups of students with a Faculty member for a one-to-one sharing and interaction. The function of a tutorial group also enables the faculty member to be a mentor and a liaison between the students and the administration on matters pertaining to the students’ academic work and their other needs while in the college. “Guru-Sishya Groups” is another forum where group of students (Sishyas) are associated with one faculty member (Guru) which meets once in a month for informal fellowship. From this academic year, the Tutorial Groups are clubbed together with Guru-Sishya Groups.


Gurukul takes pride in the fact that it has a highly competent and ecumenical faculty, deeply committed to explore new dimensions of Christian faith and values. At present Gurukul has 23 full-time faculty members and 1 Visiting Professor, from Lutheran Churches, Church of South India, Church of North India, Baptist Church, Assembly of God and Methodist Church in India.

This forms the basic ecumenical character of Gurukul, expressed in its academic programmes and societal involvement in building up the people of God in the missionary engagement of the Church within the contemporary Indian context.