Saturday, June 28, 2008


Sanne Spetter, my friend and colleague for 20+ years passed away last Sunday after holding a mucosal melanoma at bay for 2 years with surgery, radiation, chemotherapy, sheer will and love for her family and friends.

Born a Jew, hidden in a Christian household in Holland and subsequently reunited with her father, an Ethical Culturist, in the United States, Sanne was well educated regarding the world's religions and endorsed the best in all of them while belonging to none. Nonetheless, while enjoying a period of remission and recovery, she accompanied me to Our Lady of Vilnius on February 18, 2007, the next to last Sunday Mass before our closure. She sat by my side during Mass and later shook the hand of Father Eugene Sawicki who had kept both of us in his prayers throughout her illness. She witnessed first hand the place that had become so important to me and saw the people I had described in anecdotes.

Though she did not attend our church I see her as very much present there: in the prayers of the parishioners during Masses that I requested, in the constant prayers and support extended to me by Father Eugene and Joy McAleer during her illness, in the old and worn little building that symbolized many of the values that she upheld. Sanne had an uncanny ability to "tell it like it is" articulating views that were true, descriptive, crisp, live and often screamingly funny. What I will miss most is the good laughs that we shared, laughs that I doubt anyone else will ever provide.

Without the support of Our Lady of Vilnius, I doubt that I could have stood by my friend and witness the severe ravages of her illness. Without Sanne's support, I doubt that I could have sustained my efforts on behalf of Our Lady of Vilnius. Sanne will remain in our prayers and I hope that she will continue to help us and our parish.

1 comment:

christian said...

Je souaiterez prendre contact avec l'amie de Sanne Stepper au sujet de sa famille