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Tuesday, 4 December, 2001, 13:28 GMT
New Archbishop of Cardiff enthroned
Archbishop Peter Smith
Peter Smith is the new Archbishop of Cardiff
The new leader of the Catholic Church in Wales is being officially enthroned in a service at St. David's Cathedral in Cardiff.

The Most Reverend Peter Smith, 58, succeeds the former Archbishop John Aloysius Ward, who stood down in October amidst claims he had ignored warnings about paedophile priests in the archdiocese.

Former Archbishop John Ward
Former Archbishop John Ward
Peter Smith, previously the bishop of East Anglia, has now been charged with restoring the reputation of the Church after the child abuse scandals.

The former Archbishop John Ward resigned after a meeting with the Pope in Rome.

Although he had also been ill, he was facing pressure to resign over his handling of two sex abuse cases involving two Cardiff priests.

The service on Tuesday is hoped to mark a new beginning for the Catholic Church in Wales.

Archbishop Smith has already said he is anxious to look to the future and restore public confidence.

Lengthy criticism

Before Archbishop Ward's resignation, he had faced a lengthy criticism of his handling of the cases of two paedophile priests in his diocese - Father John Lloyd and Father Joe Jordan - who have since been jailed.

The 72-year-old archbishop - recently recovered after a long period of sick leave following a deep-vein thrombosis last winter - had said he was keen to resume his duties.

Father John Lloyd
Jailed: Father John Lloyd
Since December, Archbishop Ward's work has been taken over by an "apostolic administrator", Bishop Edwin Regan of Wrexham.

Archbishop Ward insisted he had been made a "scapegoat" for the church's failure to deal with the two Cardiff priests.

Lloyd was once the archbishop's press officer and it has been alleged the archbishop forwarded letters from parishioners complaining about abuse to the abuser.

As a result parishioners stopped complaining and the priest continued to abuse women, girls and boys, until he was finally stopped in 1998 and sentenced to eight years in jail.

Joseph Jordan had ended his teaching career as a result of abuse allegations but was still able to join the church.

When he applied to move from Devon to Wales, it is alleged Archbishop Ward did not tell the appointments board about the court case in which Jordan was acquitted of abuse.

Last year, Jordan was jailed for abusing children in Wales and Doncaster.

BBC Wales's Rhodri Lewis
"The new Archbishop Peter Smith came to Wales from East Anglia at the end of October."
See also:

06 Nov 00 | Wales
Diocese's shame over past abuse
17 Apr 01 | UK
A victim speaks out
10 Nov 00 | Archive
Power to Abuse November 5 2000
26 Oct 01 | Wales
Archbishop's turbulent reign
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