In 1954 I entered the Sisters of Compassion and received my religious name Sister Aidan. I was professed in 1956. After working as a nurse in our Home I started my nursing training at the Home of Compassion Hospital, graduating as a Registered Nurse in 1964. Following my nursing training I worked in the operating theatre for several years. During this time I completed my Post Graduate Course in Theatre Work.

In 1980 I changed my name back to my family name Shirley.

For six years I was co-ordinator of the Island Bay Home of Compassion representing the Sisters on the Hospital and Childcare Boards of Management.

On reflection my apostolic work has two distinct outreaches as I also worked for several years in Flaxmere, a very low economic suburb of Hastings. There I was involved with family help.  One of the joys of my Religious life was to receive the Pro Ecclesia Pontifice award from Pope Francis in 2016.

In my wisdom years I am enjoying the surprises of each day