Monthly Archives: January 2021

Passing of Janet Saponaro

Sisters, Home Visitors of Mary are saddened to inform that Janet Saponaro passed to the Lord on January 22, 2021.  Janet was a faith-filled woman with a generous spirit.  She led bible reflections at adult care homes along East Grand Blvd in Detroit and participated in a monthly faith gathering at the Capuchin soup kitchen for persons from these homes.  Her mother Margaret was Janet’s sidekick at the Capuchin soup kitchen and at HVM teas.  Janet was someone you could call on to open her home to the homeless or problem teen.

For more than ten years, Janet was an active member of the Sisters, Home visitors of Mary fundraising committee. She is known for her fancy, English bone tea cups and delicious finger sandwiches that graced the annual teas.   Janet loved to check out resale shops and garage sales, especially for art work; many items made it to the Home Visitors auction table at the annual fund raiser for the Nigerian Mission.  We remember Janet sitting on the floor  preparing items to showcase at the auction.

Janet also helped at St. Raymond parish, her childhood  parish, bringing her skills as an early childhood teacher in the Detroit public school system.  She was always present in her quiet way; she gave, she cared.   She lives in our hearts and with the Lord.

Obituary for Janet Saponaro

Age 73 January 22, 2021
Loving daughter of the late Joseph and the late Margaret Saponaro. Dear sister of Judith (Larry) Calcaterra. Also survived by her nephews; Larry (Laura), Matt (Carrie) and Mike (Stacy) and her great nieces and nephews; Amelia, Christina, Michael Jr., Caroline, Charlie, Courtney, William and Audrey. Janet was a devoted elementary school teacher for Detroit Public Schools for 33 years. Donations preferred to Sisters Home Visitors of Mary ( Visitation Monday 2-5pm. Instate Tuesday 11:30am at St. Joan of Arc Catholic Church 22415 Overlake St., St. Clair Shores, MI. until 12:00pm Mass. Share memories with the family “On-Line Guestbook”  at

Passing of Sr. Mary Finn


Sr. Mary Finn


Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me will live, even though they die; and whoever lives by believing in me will never die.”  John 11:25-26 

Sr. Mary Finn passed to her eternal reward with the Lord and dominion of Saints on January 4, 2021.

Mary Catherine Finn was born in Detroit on September 11,1934, the oldest of three girls to Mary (O’Hara) and Frank Finn.  Her mother was born and raised in Chicago and her father was raised in County Tyrone, in farm country in Northern Ireland where he was a parish catechist.   Frank (aka Barney) Finn was a Detroit street car motorman. Grandpa O’Hara also lived with the family; he would bundle young Mary, Marge and Pat in their red wagon for walks through their Glenfield-Gratiot neighborhood on the East Side of Detroit. “Every neighbor, store keeper and beer garden patron met and loved Grandpa and the three little Finn girls.”  Mary loved parish and school life at nearby St. David on beautiful Outer Drive.  In the 7th grade, Bishop Schoenherr invited her to play and coach the CYO parish girls’ basketball and fast pitch softball teams.  Mary wrote: If there had been honors and awards for girl players and coaches in those days, I would have received the best!  My batting average for the four years of high school was 800!

While in high school, Bishop Schoenherr introduced three encyclicals to Mary: Mystical Body of Christ, Holy Scriptures and Divine Liturgy – the building blocks of her life.  She didn’t want to be a teacher after high school so she entered the Sisters, Home Visitors of Mary in 1952.

Mary received degrees from Marygrove College, Marquette Univ. and Duquesne Univ. She served many times as retreat director and delegate for religious and ministry formation of seminarians.  She loved her evenings engaged with teens at the Catholic Information Center on Oakland Avenue. Mary writes: A transforming moment for me was the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. in 1968 which shook my social innocence with a great sadness about White Catholic racism.  The young men who came to play pool at the center became my Life-Teachers.

Sr. Mary moved to Sacred Heart Seminary where she taught for fifty years, still enamored with the words of God.   “A few Scriptures that still surprise and change me every time are: God’s original garden words in the human conversation with Adam and Eve: “You are very good.”  And the greeting to Mary: “Hail, favored one.  The Lord is with you.””

Sr. Mary was precede in death by her parents, beloved grandfather, sister Patricia and brother-in-law Don Barkume; and brother-in-law Ed Stano and nephew Jim Stano.  She is remembered by Marge Stano, her sister, nieces and nephews: Maureen, Dan, Brien Barkume and John and Patrick Stano along with their families and dear friend Jacqueline (John) Ahern and her religious congregation and untold number of friends and companions.

Funeral mass will be at Blessed Sacrament Cathedral in Detroit on Thursday, January 7, 2021.  10:00 am viewing.  11:00 am Eucharistic liturgy.  Msgr. Daniel Trapp presiding.