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Australian Lutheran College (ALC) is a diverse and welcoming learning community, committed to delivering quality theological education and training that prepares tomorrow's leaders - pastors, teachers, church workers and volunteers of all kinds – to serve and lead with confident Christian faith, integrity, competence and compassion in a changing world.

While ALC is located in Adelaide, South Australia, the greater majority of our students are based outside Adelaide. These students benefit from our innovative and distributed approaches to learning that utilise online learning, intensives located throughout Australia and New Zealand and practices that support deep reflection in each of our student’s local contexts.

Our origins

While ALC exists first and foremost to serve the ministry and mission of the Lutheran Church of Australia (LCA) by training its pastors, teachers and lay workers, it welcomes those from other denominations and faiths as students also.

The history of Lutheran vocational training and formation in Australia dates back to 1838 when Lutherans arrived in Australia. Following the formation of the Lutheran Church of Australia (LCA) in 1966 (when the two former synods – the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Australia and the United Evangelical Lutheran Church in Australia joined) three training institutions emerged: Luther Seminary, Lutheran Teachers College and Lay Training Centre. Eventually these three were merged to become Australian Lutheran College in 2004.

Read more about ALC’s history.

Our theology

Theology, as praise of the Triune God, is an essential function of the church. Students and teachers at ALC pursue a deeper encounter with the understanding of God’s self-revelation in his Word—for themselves, for the church and for the world.

Theology serves God through serving God’s people. ALC courses and subjects engage with the insights, knowledge, attitudes, and skills needed for service.

The theological position of ALC is that of the Lutheran Church of Australia (LCA).

As Lutherans, we believe that we are saved 'by grace, for Christ's sake, through faith'. In other words, there is nothing we can do to earn God's favour or to gain eternal life. Through his death and resurrection, Jesus Christ has won this and more for us. God shows us all of this through the Bible. The Bible is therefore at the centre of everything our Church and College teaches.

Lutherans worldwide also believe that the Lutheran Confessions, contained in the Book of Concord of 1580, are true expositions of God’s word. We also adhere to the three ecumenical (or universal) creeds that Christians confess around the world.

Our objects

The main benefits that ALC delivers to the Church are:

  • Pastor and lay worker training
  • Teacher training
  • Continuing and postgraduate studies in theology and education
  • Research
  • Training for members, congregations and organisations of the Church

In addition to this, ALC staff provide theological advice to the LCA when serving on various commissions and committees.

See the ALC constitution for the formal definition of our objects.

Our work

ALC provides services in theological education and training for ministry in a number of ways:

  • Higher education awards, including research degrees, as a college of University of Divinity (UD)
  • Vocational education and training (VET) awards are being redeveloped during 2024.
  • Workshops, studies, and training opportunities throughout Australia and New Zealand via ALC Training.
  • Resources to serve the wider Australian Lutheran community and its ministries and institutions in the area of research.

ALC is governed by a Board of Directors, who oversee the Strategic direction of the College.