'Oldest nun' who helped save Jews in WWII dies aged 110

A nun believed to have been the oldest in the world has died at the age of 110.

Sister Cecylia Maria Roszak was born in Poland on March 25, 1908, and entered a cloistered convent of Dominican sisters in Krakow at the age of 21, according to the Catholic News Agency.

During the war the convent hid 17 members of the Jewish resistance movement in their convent in Vilnius – now in Lithuania but then part of Poland – risking execution if they had been discovered.

Sister Cecylia Maria Roszak has died aged 110.Archdiocese of Krakow/Flickr

In a biography of the head of the convent, Mother Bertranda, the World Holocaust Remembrance Center said: 'Despite the enormous difference between the two groups, very close relations were formed between the religious Christian nuns and the left-wing secular Jews. The pioneers found a safe haven behind the convent's walls; they worked with the nuns in the fields and continued their political activity. They called the mother superior of the convent Ima [Mother in Hebrew].'

Mother Bertranda subsequently left the convent and became known as Anna Borkowska.

She was arrested in September 1943, the convent was closed and Sister Roszak returned to Krakow.

Along with Borkowska and the other Vilnius nuns, she was awarded the honour of Righteous Among the Nations by Yad Vashem in 1984.

She died on November 16, 2018.