A Little History


Nothing to something

While a student at Dallas Theological Seminary in Dallas, Texas, in 1973, God inspired Dr. Isaac John to start a theological institution in India with the purpose of providing postgraduate level training for Christian ministry.

His vision was to tailor theological training to the Indian context. He shared this idea with his friends and classmates at the Seminary. In 1973, a small group started to pray about India. As a result, the American Council for the Asian Christian Academy of India was formed in 1975 at Dallas. The American Council adopted several faith principles that have guided the growth of ACA. No money would be solicited except from people who know the work and whose contribution would be more than monetary. ACA was registered as a non-profit charitable organization subsequently.

In 1976, Dr. Isaac John returned to India after completing his studies. The Asian Christian Academy of India was registered as a society in Karnataka in 1978 with Dr. Isaac John as founder President, Dr. Joy M. George as Secretary and Rev. Richard Sackman as Treasurer. Before the new Bagalur campus was inaugurated Dr. Isaac John was called home by our Lord and the reigns were passed onto Dr. Joy M. George.

The 1990s were a time of implementation of Dr. John’s vision under the God-led direction of Dr. George.

ACA and the Evangelical Theological Seminary

The Evangelical Theological Seminary of ACA (ETS-ACA) was the first ministry started under the Asian Christian Academy in 1978. The administration building was the first structure completed, and staff travelled 90-odd kms from Bangalore every day to teach the handful of students who had joined. Soon by the grace of God and the supporting Churches, more resources were built starting with the cafeteria, student dormitory and followed by residential quarters for staff. In 1983, ETS moved from a “mobile seminary” model to a residential seminary.

ETS has programs at the Master’s and Doctoral levels and our strengths are in Biblical Studies and Bible Exposition with an emphasis on biblical languages and Theological Studies. Our Master’s programs are geared toward preparing expository preachers and bible college and seminary teachers. Our D.Min programs are designed to advance the training of pastors and practitioners to engage in research on ministry contexts. Our PhD programs are designed to prepare scholars who are able to engage in basic research and be seminary professors. Our programs aim to be holistic with emphases on spiritual and ministry formation. We invite you to explore the ETS website to see if ETS is the right Place for you.

The ministry at ACA has expanded beyond ETS to include a CBSE school for 3000 children, a 25 bed modern hospital and a children's home for destitute kids. ACA is now a little colony of hope that not only provides for both students and staff alike but has also impacted the lifestyle and culture of hundreds of villages and towns nearby, through its various community service programs and institutes.

The Evangelical Theological Seminary has developed gracefully over the years with

  1. Doctoral programs
  2. Three specialised tracks for our M.Th program
  3. A state of the art 30000 sq/ft library with both digital and physical archives
  4. Girls and boys dormitories
  5. Sports facilities for student physical development and recreation


Doctrinal Statement of Evangelical Theological Seminary


Mission Statement of Evangelical Theological Seminary

Advancing the gospel ministry through the equipping of men and women to be Christian leaders in India and Asia with post-graduate and doctoral theological education.


10-Year Vision Statement for Evangelical Theological Seminary

  1. Contextualisation of Theological Education: To deepen the learning experience of our seminary students by contextualising the curriculum, assessment and pedagogy to students in the South Asian context
  2. Scholarship: To advance research and writing among faculty for academic research and literature for the churches in India and Asia
  3. Expand: To expand access to theological education through online programs and developing vernacular theological educational programs

Key Values of Asian Christian Academy of India

  1. Love for Christ and Love for our Neighbour: The love of Christ compels us to follow him and we show our love for Christ by loving our Neighbour
  2. Humility: We approach one another in Christ-like humility seeking to serve the interests of Christ by seeking the interests of others
  3. Freedom: We seek to enjoy the freedom we have in Christ, not to live by the flesh but to use our God-given individuality for the service of others
  4. Prayer: We seek to be a praying community, always seeking the guidance and power of God to see his glory in our work
  5. Authority of God’s Word: We look to the inerrant Word of God as the authoritative word on understanding our ultimate mission and vision