(LifeSiteNews) – The oldest man in the world says that the secret to living a long life is, in part, to stay close to God and family.
Venezuelan Juan Vicente Pérez Mora, age 114, prays the Rosary twice every day.
Pérez said that the secret to living a long life is to “work hard, rest on holidays, go to bed early, drink a glass of aguardiente (a strong liquor made from sugarcane) every day, love God, and always carry Him in your heart.”
The devout Catholic widower was declared to be the oldest man alive by the Guinness World Records. Despite being 114 years old, he enjoys good health.
Born on May 27, 1909, Pérez was the ninth of 10 children born to Eutiquio del Rosario Pérez Mora and Edelmira Mora.
At age 5, Pérez moved with his family to Los Pajuiles, a village in San José de Bolivar where he began harvesting coffee and sugar cane with his father and siblings.
He started school at age 10 but was unable to continue after five months as his teacher became very ill. However, Pérez’ teacher had given him a book prior to her health declining; this enabled Mora to learn to read and write.
Pérez served as sheriff in Caricuena from 1948 to 1958. He was married to Ediofina del Rosario García for 60 years; she passed away in 1997.
Pérez and Ediofina had 11 children: 6 sons and 5 daughters. The family has since grown and now includes 41 grandchildren, 18 great-grandchildren, and 12 great-great-grandchildren.
According to his family, Pérez’ faith holds high priority in his life. He prays the rosary twice a day and considers his family and friends to be his greatest life companions.
Pérez revealed that the most important things he has learned in life are “the love of God, the love of family, and that we must get up early to work.”