In Memoriam


Sister Shirley Thielk, formerly known as Sister Joyce Edward, died on Sunday, September 11, 2022, at the Dominican Life Center in Adrian, Michigan. She was 93 years of age and in the 74th year of her religious profession in the Adrian Dominican Congregation.

Sister Shirley was born in Highland Park, Michigan, to Edward and Hilda (Wellnitz) Thielk. She graduated from St. Ambrose High School in Grosse Pointe Park, Michigan, and received a bachelor’s degree in mathematics and a master’s degree in counseling, both from Siena Heights College (University) in Adrian; a master’s degree in mathematics from the University of Detroit (Detroit Mercy); and a master’s degree in computer science from the University of Dayton.  

Sister spent 24 years ministering in education in Chicago, Illinois; Cleveland, Ohio; Utica, Michigan; and Malawi, East Africa. This includes 11 years at Hoban Dominican High School in Cleveland, an institution of the Congregation. 

Sister Shirley was also an administrative assistant for two years at St. Theresa Home for the Aged in Cincinnati, Ohio. She was provincial administrator for four years for St. Catherine of Siena Province in Detroit and ministered for twelve years in the Finance Office of the Dominican Motherhouse in Adrian. She spent 14 years in the Computer Services Department and medical staff offices at Dominican Hospital in Santa Cruz, California. 

Sister Shirley became a resident of the Dominican Life Center in Adrian in 2009. She was preceded in death by her parents; two brothers, Thomas and David Thielk; and five sisters, Elizabeth Mitchell, Geraldine Jordan, Joyce Opromalla, Joanne Mackris and Jacqueline Kunysz. She is survived by seven siblings: Kathryn Warras (Bryan) of West Bloomfield, John Thielk (Mouy) of Fair Haven, and Sister Dorothy Thielk – also an Adrian Dominican Sister – all in Michigan; Edward Thielk of San Fernando, California; Margaret Zukowski (Daniel) of Amherst, Virginia; Rose Marie Popowitz of Porter, Texas; and Donald Thielk of Kula, Hawaii; other loving family members; and her Adrian Dominican Sisters.

Due to COVID-19 mitigation protocols, the Dominican Life Center is closed to all guests or visitors until further notice. All are welcome to participate in Sister’s services via live stream

The Vigil Prayer will be held at 7:00 p.m. Wednesday, September 14, 2022, in St. Catherine Chapel. A Mass of Christian Burial will be offered in St. Catherine Chapel at 10:30 a.m. Thursday, September 15, 2022. Prayers of Committal will be held in the Congregation Cemetery.  

make a memorial giftMemorial gifts may be made to Adrian Dominican Sisters, 1257 East Siena Heights Drive, Adrian, Michigan, 49221. Funeral arrangements are being handled by Anderson-Marry Funeral Home, Adrian.

Sister's Prayer Card (PDF)

Vigil for Sister Shirley

Worship Aid (PDF)

Download video. Videos will be posted for 4-6 weeks, then removed.

Funeral for Sister Shirley

Worship Aid (PDF)

Download video. Videos will be posted for 4-6 weeks, then removed.


Left: Sisters Shirley Thielk, left, and Dorothy Thielk, right, pose with their parents, 1970.

Right: From left, Sisters Jeanne Burns, Shirley Thielk, and Veronica Kelley at Dominican Hospital, Santa Cruz, California

Left: From left, Sisters Karen Fisk, Linda Bevilacqua, Nadine Foley, Shirley Thielk, and Winifred Lynch participate in Transformations 1989, a gathering at the Motherhouse. Right: Sisters Shirley Thielk, left, and Joan Leo Kehn celebrate Christmas.

Left: Sisters Shirley Thielk, left, and Kathleen Therese McCann. Right: Sisters Marcine Klemm, left, and Shirley Thielk

Members of the Pilgrim People Mission Group in 2008-2009 are: back row, from left, Sister Madeline Mary Dervin; Associates Nancy McNulty and Caroline Manildi; Sisters Marion O’Loughlin, Mina Riggs, Jean Fitzgerald, and Jeri Renner; and front row, from left, Sisters Marie Wiedner, Judith Silva, Shirley Thielk, Mary Margaret Beh, and Veronica Kelley.

Left: Sisters Jean Fitzgerald, left, and Shirley Thielk. Right: Members of the 2017 Double Diamond December Reception Crowd are, back row, from left, Sisters Shirley Mary Heymes, Patricia Siemen (Prioress), Jeanne Burns, Shirley Thielk, Mary Saynay, and Marcine Klemm, and front row, from left, Sisters Theresa Nightingale, Margaret Lane, Kathleen Therese McCann, Janet Persyk, and Cyrilla Zarek.


Leave your comments and remembrances (if you don't see the comment box below, click on the "Read More" link).

Cemetery of the Adrian Dominican Sisters

Our Adrian Dominican cemetery with its circular headstones is a beautiful place of rest for women who gave their lives in service to God — and a peaceful place for contemplation and remembrance. 

Helpful Links

Dominican School Alumnae/Alumni

Become an Adrian Dominican Associate

What do you have to do to become a Sister?

Share our blog, A Sister Reflects

Sign up for the monthly Veritas newsletter (or view our other publications)

Employment opportunities


We invite you to meet some of the wonderful women who have recently crossed into eternity.


Recent Posts

Read More »

Previous Years