Bishop George Stack has been appointed to lead the Welsh archdiocese

The Vatican has appointed a Westminster auxiliary bishop to head the Archdiocese of Cardiff.

Bishop George Stack has been appointed to the Welsh archdiocese which was left empty for almost a year after Archbishop Peter Smith was moved to Southwark.

The date for his installation is still to be confirmed.

Bishop Stack, who served as a priest in Westminster for 29 years and an auxiliary bishop for 10 years under Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O’Connor, said: “I look forward to serving the people and clergy of the Church in Cardiff with love and faithfulness in the years that lie ahead.”

He added: “I am aware of the long and noble history of Christianity in Wales and the special gifts the Celtic people bring to the Universal Church. I hope to share in this rich tradition of faith.”

Born in Cork, Ireland in 1946, Bishop Stack moved to London with his family in 1951. He was a seminarian at St Edmund’s College, Ware and was ordained a priest for Westminster in 1972. He has a B.Ed from St Mary’s Twickenham.

He served as a parochial vicar and as a schools and hospital chaplain. In the 1980s he was parish priest of Our Lady Help of Christians in Kentish Town, London. He then served as vicar general from 1990 to 1993 befor being appointed the chief of the metropolitan Cathedral of Westminster.

Bishop Stack became an auxiliary of Westminster in 2001.

Archbishop Vincent Nichols of Westminster said: “As President of the Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales I welcome the appointment of the new Archbishop of Cardiff. We are grateful to the Holy Father for making this appointment so soon after the arrival of our new Papal Nuncio. The See of Cardiff is an important one for the life of Wales and for the Bishops’ Conference. It is good to know that it will be filled with a bishop of such experience and dedication as Bishop George Stack. We welcome this appointment and assure Bishop Stack of our continuing prayers and affection.”