History: The Post graduates courses of both the Master of Theology (M.Th) and Doctor of Theology (D.Th) are offered under the North India Institute of Post-Graduate Theological Studies (NIIPGTS), jointly sponsored by Serampore College and Bishop’s College. It started functioning from June 1980. The preamble of its constitution worked out by the joint sub-committee of both the colleges on 3rd May 1979 states:
With a view to avoid duplicating the work in post-graduate teaching and in order to offer jointly what the two colleges cannot effectively offer individually, Serampore College and Bishop’s College propose to set up a joint faculty consisting of competent staff drawn from both colleges. Such an institute would meet a pressing need for a Centre of advanced theological study and research in North India. The two colleges would share their resources of personnel and library for advanced theological education.
Aims and Objectives: The contemporary challenges that the church in India faces in the context of religious awakening and cultural pluralism, the issues of poverty and justice, and the concerns raised by liberation movements call for a contextual and holistic approach to higher theological studies paying also attention to our heritage. The M.Th and D.Th degree programmes of NIIPGTS are as such a creative response in North India.
The perspective from which the programmes are envisaged underlines the following facets:
(a) The study of Asian languages, cultures, patterns of thought and behaviour;
(b) The cultural, ideological and religious plurality of our societies;
(c) The legitimate aspirations of all people for justice, freedom, dignity and a life worthy of humanity
(d) The ecumenical dimension of all Christian thinking in relation to the unity of the Church, unity of faith, the integrity of creation, and sensitivity to all other dimensions of our life – local, regional and global.
The main objectives of the Programmes are:
- To train candidates for teaching in theological colleges.
- To promote the formation of well equipped Christian teachers, leaders, communicators, writers and scholars.
- To equip candidates with adequate academic tools and skills for critical and methodological reflection as well as creative participation in the diversified ministries of the Church.
- To provide leadership for shaping the self-understanding and structures of the Church, which are relevant for fulfilling its God-given vocation in the world.
- To promote critical and creative research in specialized fields of knowledge related to the life, heritage and mission of the Church as well as contextual Christian faith, and to advance the frontiers of knowledge.
- To encourage independent and original research using integrated and inter- disciplinary approach in theological education.