Saint Richard 1197 – 1253

See of Chichester largeBishop of Chichester. Richard was born at Droitwich in 1197. On the death of his parents the family farm was neglected by those who held it in trust, which necessitated Richard interrupting his education to help save the farm and property. Richard resumed his studies at Oxford then in Paris and Bologna.

In 1235 he was elected Chancellor of Oxford University. His former tutor, St. Edmund of Abingdon, appointed Archbishop of Canterbury in 1236, made him Provincial Chancellor. On Edmund’s death in 1240 Richard decided to become a priest. Following his ordination in 1242 he was parish priest at Charing and Deal in Kent. Boniface, successor of Edmund as archbishop, reappointed Richard as Provincial Chancellor.

Richard was elected Bishop of Chichester in 1244 by a Provincial Synod endorsed by Boniface. The rival election of Richard Passelew by the Chapter, favoured by King Henry III, was not acceptable to Boniface and the bishops. Innocent III confirmed the appointment of Richard de Wyche and consecrated him in Lyons in 1245.

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