During these years the congregation expanded its mission of compassionate care into society in various parts of New Zealand, Australia and reaching into the Pacific. Care of the elderly and children filled our Homes and schools. The Hospital at Island Bay was in great demand. Well known physicians and surgeons generously gave of their knowledge and skills to the Sister’s mission of caring for the handicapped, the sick, the young and elderly, the homeless and all who would knock on the door seeking support and help. It was great to feel part of this expanding mission as it seemed to us young Sisters of that era. We were willing, able and looking for challenges which never daunted us. We trained either in the professions of nursing or tertiary education becoming fully qualified persons, bubbling with enthusiasm ‘go you are sent forth’ in the spirit of our Foundress Suzanne Aubert.
I was fortunate to have opportunities to work in the Aubert Home in Whanganui, also a short spell in the Jerusalem Mission. I had time at St Vincent’s Home in Auckland to consolidate my Midwifery Training before returning to the Island Bay Hospital in Wellington. I appreciated the opportunity of work experience in the Wellington Regional Hospital Cardiac /Thoracic Unit prior to being assigned to Loreto Home in Wagga Wagga as Director of Nursing / Manager. During my ten years the Home had a major rebuild, plus extension and refurbishing of exiting nursing services. Only the best of care and facilities for the elderly. Returning to New Zealand in 2000 I resided in a suburb near the beautiful Waitakere hills in Auckland. Here I engaged my skills and experience in various organisations, SVDP activities, Wesleycare Methodist Homecare, North Shore Faith & Light Group, Pt Chevalier Ladies Probus Club and local parish activities. As a Sister of Compassion I’ve seen and been involved in many facets of life. Opportunities were given to empathise, rescue and journey with persons who were struggling with spiritual, social and physical burdens. I’m very grateful of being given wonderful opportunities of being able to empathise with people during my journey as a Sister of Compassion. In 2011 I accept the unexpected position as Deputy Leader of the Congregation. My life remains open to surprises and challenges just as Suzanne Aubert experienced during her long and fruitful life. “Time to rest in eternity” so said Suzanne as she encourages us to stand with Mary at the foot of the cross. Suzanne like Mary was steadfast in her vocation of compassionate love and loyalty for her son, Jesus. Sr Veronica Hurring