With a view to engage in serious, scholarly and scientific study and research in Christian Theology and Philosophy, the Indian Institute of Christian Studies (IICS) was formed on 10.10.1982 and became a registered society on 8.6.1983. The dioceses of Bathery, Calicut, Irinjalakuda, Kottayam, Mananthavady, Palghat, Tellicherry, Trichur, later the dioceses of Kottappuram and Thamarassery, the Catholic College managements and the Major Religious Congregations in the jurisdictional area of the University of Calicut came together to form the Institute. IICS established the Chair for Christian Studies and Research (CCSR) at the University of Calicut which started functioning on 17.3.1986 with the University Order no. GA (B1) 9565/82. The bishops of the above dioceses are patrons of the IICS. The Chief Patron is the Archbishop of Trichur.
The attempts to establish the Chair were coordinated by Archbishop Joseph Kundukulam, Bishop Sebastian Mankuzhikkari, Padmabhushan Fr Gabriel CMI and Rev. Dr. Sebastian Pappu Kanjirathingal. St POPE JOHN PAUL II of holy memory blessed the foundation stone for the Chair at Trichur on 7.2.1986. Card. Simon Lourdusamy inaugurated CCSR at Calicut on 28.08.1987. Foundation stone for the new building of CCSR was laid by Mar Jacob Thoomkuzhy on 26.2.2005. On Dec. 5th 2015, the new building was inaugurated in the University campus.
Dr. Sebastian Kanjirathingal was the first Head and the Visiting Professor of the Chair from 1986 till 1989. Dr. Joseph Velachery (1989-1994), Rev.Dr. Vincent Alappat CMI (1994-2002), Rev. Sr. Dr. Rossetta CMC (2002-2006) led the Chair in the following years and acted as Visiting professors. Rev. Dr. Paul Pulikkan heads the Chair from 2006, being also the Visiting professor. Dr. Sr. Sheena Kolengadan CHF worked as Visiting professor for a brief period between 27.10.2012 – 26.1.2013.