Sister Aidan Donaldson and Shane Stephens, the Irish Consulate, Atlanta, Georgia on her 106th birthday
A nun who attended a boarding school in Newry as a young girl celebrated her 111th birthday last week in Alabama, USA, making her most likely the oldest living Sister in the world and certainly the oldest Sister of Mercy.
Sister Aidan Donaldson was born in Dromore, Co Down on 20th August 1908.
While attending school two Sisters of Mercy from Mobile in Alabama, USA called seeking vocations and after considering it this eventually saw her America bound at the young age of 19 to join the Sisters of Mercy community in religious life.
Sister Aidan and Sandra Redmond Keogh of Arklow, Co Wicklow visiting Mobile from Ireland in September 2015
She chose the name of a favourite teacher from home Sister Aidan and began her teaching ministry in September 1927. As well as Mobile, Sr. Aidan ministered in Baltimore, Maryland; Birmingham, Huntsville and Bessemer, Alabama; Pensacola, Florida. In her later years she served in varied roles in St. Ignatius Parish, Mobile as pastoral minister, co-ordinator of the pastoral transportation committee and moderator of the Legion of Mary.
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This article was first published in Newry.ie and was written by Columba O’Hare