Richard Lionel Clarke (born 25 June 1949) is an Irish Anglican bishop and author. Since 2012, he has been the Archbishop of Armagh and Primate of All Ireland. As such, he is the senior hierarch of the Church of Ireland.
Early life and education
Clarke was born on 25 June 1949 in Dublin, Ireland. He was educated at Wesley College, a fee-paying independent school in Dublin. He attended Trinity College, Dublin (M.A., Ph.D.) and King's College London (B.D.) where he studied history and theology.
Clarke was ordained a deacon in 1975 and priest in 1976, serving as a curate in Holywood, County Down for two years from 1975-77 and again as a curate at St Bartholomew's with Christ Church, Leeson Park, Dublin from 1977-79, before he serving as Dean of Residence at Trinity College, Dublin for five years. Clarke travelled thence to Bandon, County Cork, where he served as rector until 1993 when he was appointed Dean of Cork.
Clarke was elected and consecrated to the bishopric of Meath and Kildare in 1996.
In 2012, he was elected, in succession to Alan Harper, to be the Archbishop of Armagh and Primate of All Ireland. His translation to Armagh took effect on 15 December 2012, on which date he also was enthroned at St Patrick's Cathedral.
He has two children and 3 grandchildren, as of 2017. His wife, Linda, died in 2009.
Clarke is the author of And Is It True? (2000), The Unharmonious Blacksmith (2002) and A Whisper of God (2006).