The Benjamin Bailey Memorial Lecture was instituted in 1983 by the Principal Rev. M.C. John to perpetuate the memory of Rev. Benjamin Bailey, the first Principal of the College. The first Benjamin Bailey Memorial Lecture was delivered by Prof. Mithra G. Augustine, former Principal of the Madras Christian College on February 2nd and 3rd, 1983. Several luminaries have delivered the Benjamin Bailey Memorial Lectures over the years. They include Mr. K. R. Narayanan, former President of India and alumnus of the college, eminent Diplomats like the British High Commissioner to India and the German Ambassador to India.
The Benjamin Bailey Memorial Lecture delivered in October 2010 by Prof. Dr. John Lea, Professor of Architecture, University of Sydney and son of Rev. Philip Lea the last English Principal of the College was a truly historic event because Prof. Lea handed over to the College a postcard that had been written by the Father of the Nation in reply to a letter sent to him by Rev. Philip Lea. This postcard was carefully filed by Rev. Philip Lea among his personal papers. and was treasured by the Lea family until it was handed over to the College in 2010. Today, this postcard written in the Mahatma’s own hand is one of the treasures of the College.