Adaikalanathar Church – First Lutheran Church in Madras

The First Lutheran Church in Madras, its beginnings were in a church founded by a catechist, Adaikalam Pillai, in Purasawalkkam in 1846. In 1848, it formally became Lutheran Church, its First Pastor, Carl Friedrich Kremmer, arriving from Germany that November. The Church in Tana street, is still known as the Adaikalanathar Church, but pictures of it from out of the past certainly show a more interesting building than the new constructions.

Not far from the church is the Gurukul Lutheran Theological College and Research Institute. Its beauitful tree sheded campus at Kelly’s is now abbreviated by highrise on Pursawalkkam High Road and new building inside, contrasting quite startlingly with the old garden house in which the college began, with beginnings in 1912, the Union Theological Seminary’ became the Gurukul in 1931 and took its present name in 1953. Its early degree were from Gettysburgh College in Pennsylvania, but its later links were forged with the college at Serampore, whose charter, for the grant of degrees derives from the King of Denmark. Dr. Kunchal Rajaratnam, Director of the Institute, in 1991 became and remains the first Master of the Serampore College Council from the Gurukul.