List of Apostolic Nuncios to China

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Apostolic Nunciature to China
Nuntiatura Apostolica in Sinis
Apostolic Nunciature to China (2015-).jpg
The office of the Apostolic Nunciature to China located in Taipei, Republic of China.
Former names Apostolic Internunciature to China (English)
Internuntiatura Apostolica in Sinis(Latin)
Alternative names Holy See Embassy in Taipei
General information
Location Taipei, Taiwan, Republic of China
Address 7-1, Lane 265, Heping East Road Section 2, Daan District
Current tenants Chargé d'affaires of the Apostolic Nunciature to China

The Apostolic Nuncio to China is the diplomatic representative of the Apostolic Nunciature of the Holy See, a diplomatic mission of the Holy See to "China", which as far as the Vatican is concerned, is the Republic of China, which is now commonly known to most of the world as Taiwan. Due to this difference in diplomatic recognition of "China", unlike most of other countries who recognize People's Republic of China as "China" and whose embassies are located in Beijing, People's Republic of China, the "Apostolic Nuncio to China" is located in Taipei, Taiwan, Republic of China.

The rank of a nuncio is equivalent to that of an ambassador. The post is currently vacant and is represented by a chargé d'affaires. The office of the nunciature is located at 7-1, Lane 265, Heping East Road Section 2, Daan District, Taipei.


Efforts by both the Roman Catholic Church and the Chinese government to establish direct contact began in the late Qing Dynasty. Direct contact would break the restrictions from the Protectorate of missions of France. The Roman Catholic Church responded to a request by Li Hongzhang of the Qing Empire on 3 May 1870, and established diplomatic ties.[1][2] The church sent Archbishop Antonio Agliardi to China in early August as plenipotentiary with regard to diplomatic affairs.[1][2] In July 1918, the Holy See and the Beiyang Government of the Republic of China agreed to send Giuseppe Petrelli and Dai Chenlin as their respective diplomats.[1][2] However, this did not succeed due to objections from France.[1][2][3]

Relations between the Republic of China and the Holy See strengthened in 1922 when Celso Benigno Luigi Costantini was appointed as an Apostolic Delegate to China, although he had no diplomatic status.[4] Official diplomatic ties were established in 1946 when Antonio Riberi assumed office as Apostolic Internuncio to China.[5][6]

In 1951 Riberi left mainland China following the relocation of the Government of the Republic of China to Taiwan.[5] In 1966 the Apostolic Internunciature in China was upgraded to an Apostolic Nunciature. Since then, the Apostolic Nunciature to China sits at Taipei, Taiwan. Giuseppe Caprio became the first Apostolic Pro-Nuncio to China.[7]

On 25 October 1971 the United Nations General Assembly Resolution 2758 was passed and the Holy See recalled the Apostolic Nuncio to China. Since that time, diplomatic affairs have been administered by chargés d'affaires.[8]

Not recognising the existence of Two Chinas, the Apostolic Nunciature to China is nominally in charge of the affairs of the Roman Catholic Church in Taiwan and mainland China, as part of the Republic of China.[7][9]

Apostolic Delegates to China (1922–1946)[edit]

In 1922 Celso Benigno Luigi Costantini was appointed by the Holy See as Apostolic Delegate to China, without diplomatic status.[4]

Name Name in Chinese Nationality Assumed office Left office
Celso Benigno Luigi Costantini[4] 剛恆毅 Gāng Héngyì  Italy 12 August 1922 1933
Mario Zanin 蔡寧 Cài Níng  Italy 7 January 1934 1946

Apostolic Internuncios to China (1946–1966)[edit]

Name Name in Chinese Nationality Assumed office Presentation
of credentials
Left office
Antonio Riberi[5] 黎培理 Lí Péilǐ  Monaco 6 July 1946 28 December 1946[10] 1951
The Apostolic Nunciature to China was relocated to Taiwan in 1952 after the People's Republic of China broke off diplomatic ties with the Holy See.
Giuseppe Caprio 高理耀 Gāo Lǐyào  Italy 20 May 1959 29 October 1959[11] 24 December 1966

Apostolic Nuncios to China (1966–present)[edit]

Name Name in Chinese Nationality Assumed office Presentation
of credentials
Left office Diplomatic title
Giuseppe Caprio 高理耀 Gāo Lǐyào  Italy 24 December 1966 30 January 1967[12] 22 August 1967 Apostolic Pro-Nuncio
Luigi Accogli 艾可儀 Ài Kěyí  Italy 16 October 1967 23 December 1967[3] 29 September 1970
Edward Idris Cassidy 葛錫迪 Gé Xīdí  Australia 27 October 1970 5 December 1970[13] 25 October 1971
The post has been vacant since 25 October 1971, when the nuncio was recalled by the Holy See from Taiwan and represented by chargés d'affaires.

Chargés d'affaires[edit]

Name Name in Chinese Nationality Assumed office Left Office
Francesco Colasuonno 高樂天 Gāo Lètiān  Italy 2 August 1972[3] 1974
Thomas A. White 陶懷德 Táo Huáidé  Ireland 1974 1978
Paolo Giglio 吉立友 Jí Lìyǒu  Malta 12 July 1978 1986
Piero Biggio 畢齊樂 Bì Qílè  Italy 6 April 1986 1988
Adriano Bernardini 裴納德 Péi Nàdé  Italy 17 January 1989 1992
Juliusz Janusz 尤雅士 Yóu Yǎshì  Poland 25 August 1992 1995
Joseph Chennoth 車納德 Chē Nàdé  India 26 April 1995 1999
Adolfo Tito Yllana 易福霖 Yì Fúlín  Philippines 20 September 1999 6 January 2002
James Patrick Green 格霖澤 Gé Línzé  United States 18 January 2002 2003
Ambrose Madtha 安博思 Ān Bósī  India 11 February 2003[14] 8 May 2008[15]
Paul Fitzpatrick Russell[8] 陸思道 Lù Sīdào  United States 8 May 2008[16][17] Present

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d Sergio Ticozzi (2006–2007). "Lou Tseng-Tsiang (1871-1949) and Sino-Vatican Diplomatic Relations". Holy Spirit Study Centre. Retrieved 2013-12-27. 
  2. ^ a b c d 田英杰, translated by 陈爱洁 (2009-09-03). 陆征祥与中梵外交关系 [Lou Tseng-Tsiang and China-Vatican relations] (in Chinese). 
  3. ^ a b c 陳方中; 江國雄 (2003). 中梵外交關係史. 臺北: 臺灣商務印書館. ISBN 9570518359. 
  4. ^ a b c Jean-Paul Wiest. "Celso Benigno Luigi Costantini". Biographical Dictionary of Chinese Christianity. Retrieved 2013-12-27. 
  5. ^ a b c China Group. "Antonio Riberi". Biographical Dictionary of Chinese Christianity. Retrieved 2013-12-27. 
  6. ^ Eman Bonnici (2008-06-14). "Cardinal Antonio Riberi". Find A Grave. Retrieved 2013-12-27. 
  7. ^ a b "Apostolic Nunciature of China". Retrieved 2013-12-27. 
  8. ^ a b "Radio Taiwan International Interview of Msgr. Paul Russell". 2010-03-25. Retrieved 2013-12-27. 
  9. ^ "Ambassadors, clergy discuss history of ROC-Vatican relations at seminar". Taiwan Info. 2002-12-13. Retrieved 2013-12-27. 
  10. ^ 郭廷以 (1985). 中華民國史事日誌. 臺北: 中央研究院近代史研究所. 
  11. ^ 教廷新任駐華公使高理耀晉謁蔣中正總統呈遞到任國書 [The new Apostolic Internuncio Giuseppe Caprio presents his credentials to President Chiang Kai-shek]. 中央社 秦炳炎 (in Chinese). 國家文化資料庫 (published 2002-12-31). 1959-10-29. 
  12. ^ 教廷新任駐華大使高理耀呈送國書副本 [The new Apostolic Nuncio Giuseppe Caprio presents his credentials]. 中央社 潘月康 (in Chinese). 國家文化資料庫. 1967-01-30. 
  13. ^ 教廷新任駐華大使葛錫迪呈遞國書 [The new Apostolic Nuncio Edward Cassidy presents his credentials]. 中華民國新聞 (in Chinese). Presidential Office Building, Taipei, Taiwan: 台灣電影文化公司 (published December 1970). 1970-12-05. 
  14. ^ 新任教廷驻华代办否认台梵关系生变. (in Chinese). 天亚社.台北讯. 2003-03-03. 
  15. ^ 梅雅美--安博思主教將調任教廷駐象牙海岸大使 (in Chinese). 2008-06-05. 
  16. ^ 總統歡迎新任教廷代辦 盼加強雙邊關係. (in Chinese) (中央社). 2008-06-10. 
  17. ^ "Press release by the Apostolic Nunciature to China". Taipei. 2008-05-08. 

External links[edit]