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Welsh archbishop, pressured to resign, meets with pope

A Welsh archbishop who is under pressure in his archdiocese to resign met Pope John Paul II at the Vatican on Thursday, the archbishop's spokesman said.

Archbishop John A. Ward of Cardiff, 72, has been accused by some of his clergy and lay people of ignoring warnings about two priests later convicted of sexually abusing children.

Since December, the archdiocese has been run by Bishop Edwin Regan of Wrexham, Wales, whom the pope appointed as apostolic administrator after Archbishop Ward suffered a deep vein thrombosis. In early October, Archbishop Ward announced his intention to stay in office until he reaches the retirement age of 75 in 2004, maintaining that the apostolic administrator was named only because of the illness.