The statement stated that Sister André, born Lucille Randon on February 11, 1904, had devoted most of her life to religious service. Before becoming a Catholic nun, she took care of children during World War II, then spent 28 years caring for orphans and elderly people in a hospital.
Sister Andre, who lives near the French city of Toulon, is also the world’s oldest Covid-19 survivor. A Guinness World Records statement said she tested positive for the virus at the beginning of 2021, but made a full recovery within three weeks, just in time to celebrate her 117th birthday.
In an interview with France’s RMC Story on Tuesday, Sister Andre appeared to have mixed feelings about being the oldest new living person.
“I feel like I’d be better off in heaven, but the good Lord doesn’t want me yet,” she said, calling the title a “sad honor.”
However, she also expressed her happiness to be “pampered” by her family.
Sister André enjoys chocolate and wine — and drinks a glass every day — the nursing home, Résidence Catherine Laboré, confirmed to CNN on Tuesday.
When she turned 118 earlier this year, the elderly nun received a handwritten birthday note from French President Emmanuel Macron – the 18th French president in her life – according to a tweet from the nursing home. There have also been 10 different popes who have presided over the Catholic Church since its birth.
The title of oldest person ever recorded also belongs to a French woman. Born Jane Louise Calment on February 21, 1875, she took 122 years and 164 days, according to a Guinness World Records statement.