Archbishop Emeritus Nicholas Chia woken up from coma, manages a 'Hello'

Since Thursday, however, the 75-year-old has not uttered any further words, and is to remain in critical care at Mount Alvernia Hospital.

SINGAPORE - Archbishop Emeritus Nicholas Chia was "fairly conscious" on Thursday and was able to say "Hello" to his doctors, wrote Archbishop William Goh's personal assistant Magdalene Lee, in an internal statement.

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The former head of the Catholic Church here was warded with a serious injury after falling in February this year.

He suffered intracranial haemorrhage (bleeding within the skull), a church spokesman said.

He was warded in the intensive care unit of Mount Alvernia Hospital and Medical Centre, but was moved out of intensive care to a private ward after a slight improvement in his condition.

The 75-year-old, who stepped down as the Roman Catholic Archbishop of Singapore last May after more than a decade at the helm, was found lying on the ground at Punggol Park by a passer-by.

The park is next to the Catholic Spirituality Centre, where he lives. He was rushed to hospital immediately.

The spokesman for the Catholic Church said: "We ask that everyone prays for his swift recovery, but ultimately, it is in the hands of God."