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Former Archbishop of Cardiff dies suddenly

 Archbishop John Aloysius Ward, 78, who was Archbishop of Cardiff for nearly 20 years, died suddenly on 27 March. The Most Rev John Ward became Archbishop on March 29, 1983. He retired due to ill-health in 2001. Archbishop Peter Smith said he was 'deeply saddened' to hear the news. He said: " He was a dedicated friar, priest and bishop throughout the 50 years of his ministry. My thoughts and prayers go to his sister Margaret, his family and friends across the parishes and two dioceses in which he served as bishop." Born in Leeds, Archbishop Ward educated at Prior Park College, Bath. He joined the Capuchin Friars in Holywell, Clwyd, and was ordained in the Franciscan parish, in Peckham, London, in 1953. He went on to direct a travelling mission in North Wales for seven years before becoming guardian of the community and parish priest at Peckham. In 1969, he became minister provincial, and a year later was elected as Rome-based advisor to the Father General, head of the Catholic Jesuit order. His duties took him all over the world. He was appointed coadjutor Bishop of the Menevia diocese, covering the traditional counties of Brecknockshire, Cardiganshire, Carmarthenshire, Pembrokeshire and Radnorshire, in 1980. The Archbishop attended the Synod of Bishops, in Rome, on behalf of the Bishops' Conference of England and Wales, in 1994. Archbishop Ward leaves one sister, Margaret. Archbishop Ward's funeral is due to take place on Monday, 2 April. Archbishop Vincent Nichols will be preaching the homily. Source: agencies