Nicholas Kao Se Tseien

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Nicholas Kao Se Tseien

Father Nicholas Kao Se Tseien in 2007.JPG
Born(1897-01-15)15 January 1897
Died11 December 2007(2007-12-11) (aged 110)
ReligionRoman Catholic
Alma materXiamen University
Known foroldest living Catholic priest
OrderOrder of Cistercians of the Strict Observance
ChurchCathedral of the Immaculate Conception
Our Lady of Joy Abbey

Nicholas Kao Se Tseien O.C.S.O. (traditional Chinese: 高師謙; simplified Chinese: 高师谦; pinyin: Gāo Shīqiān; 15 January 1897[1] – 11 December 2007),[2] was a Chinese Roman Catholic priest living in Hong Kong who had been the oldest living Catholic priest and was the oldest ever person to have had a cataract operation according to the Guinness Book of World Records.[1][3]


Born in Fuzhou, Fujian province, one of four brothers, he studied law at Xiamen University and later converted to Roman Catholicism at age 18 while attending a school run by Spanish Dominican friars. Although trained as a teacher and studying law at night, he ultimately decided to become a priest.

His life spanned parts of three centuries, two Emperors of China, and ten papacies, he stated that in 1912 he voted for Sun Yat Sen as China's president.[1] His clerical life would brought him from China to Taiwan, Malaysia and, finally, Hong Kong.

In 1972 at the age of 75, he was elevated to a high priest abbot position at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception,[4] he lived a life of cloistered solitude. Nevertheless, he regularly shared his way to a healthy and long life, his list of "Healthy Seven Nos" was given to visitors and suggested, "no smoking; no anger; no alcohol; no overeating; constant exercise; constant prayer; no rudeness." He was devoted to the Blessed Virgin Mary throughout his life, would say the Rosary many times each day, and built six shrines to her in Taiwan, Mainland China, Malaysia and Hong Kong.[5]

He remained as the Trappist priest in Our Lady of Joy Abbey (Trappist Haven Monastery) at Lantau Island for more than 30 years.[5]

Kao died at the church in the morning on 11 December 2007, at the age of 110 years 330 days.[6]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c Mitchell, Justin (8 October 2005). "Priest confesses secrets of longevity". The Standard. Archived from the original on 16 July 2012.
  2. ^ "Secluded in Lantau Island, the longest-lived Hong Kong native, 110-year-old man died 隱居大嶼山修道 最長壽的香港人110歲人瑞逝世". Apple Daily (in Chinese). 12 December 2007. Retrieved 27 September 2017.
  3. ^ Reportage at Vatican Radio, January 18, 2007 Archived October 11, 2007, at the Wayback Machine
  4. ^ Hao, Gao (November 26, 2017). "Master's Day, Christ the King's Day, 3849 Recalling Father Gao Shiqian". Retrieved December 4, 2018.
  5. ^ a b ""Other Local Church News" Father Gao Shiqian of the Lantau Mountain Monastery, Master Shi Qian, celebrates the 110th birthday 其他本地教會新聞 大嶼山神樂院高師謙神父 感恩祭慶祝一百一十壽辰". Kung Kao Po (in Chinese). Retrieved 5 December 2018.
  6. ^ "本地教會 第3330期". Retrieved 2019-06-13.

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