Date of death: 10/12/2023
Saint Meinrad Class: GTP 1998
Janis Faye Mavronicles Dopp, 76, of Bloomington, IN, passed away on Thursday, October 12, 2023 in her home with her husband at her side. She was born on September 3, 1947, in Gary, Indiana, to John Mavronicles and Helen Polovich Mavronicles.
Survivors include her husband of 53 years, John H. Dopp of Bloomington; her daughter, Michele (Blaise Heltai) Heltai-Dopp; her son, Michael (Nancy Choi) Dopp; her beloved granddaughter, Mona Faye Choi-Dopp; a brother, Nicholas (Roxanne) Mavronicles; a sister in law, Thuy (Thanh Thuy Pham) Mavronicles; and several nieces, nephews and cousins. She was preceded in death by her parents and a brother, Michael Mavronicles.
She received her Bachelor’s Degree in English from Indiana University and her Master’s Degree from Saint Meinrad School of Theology. She served as the Director of Religious Education at Saint Charles Borromeo Catholic Church for over 25 years. After a brief retirement she returned to work as the Oblate Director for Saint Meinrad Archabbey, where she was the first layperson to hold the title. She continued in this position for the past 5 years, helping to redefine the role of the laity in Benedictine life. Most recently, she helped organize the 5th World Congress of Benedictine Oblates in Rome, Italy, this September, which culminated in a private audience with Pope Francis. Prior to accepting this position, she had been a member of the Benedictine Oblates for over 30 years.
Among her family and friends, Janis was famous for her quick wit, sharp intellect, and baked goods. She never failed to arrive at the monastery without abundant quantities of fresh baked cranberry scones, which the monks would quickly devour. During the holidays, she made dozens of varieties of Christmas cookies, some recipes of which were passed down to her from her mother. In addition to baking, she amassed a vast cookbook library with over 1,000 titles and delighted in sharing her knowledge and love of all things salty and sweet.
Janis had a fierce fashion sensibility, and loved a good deal. Shopping in New York with her daughter at the consignment shops and Century 21 were among her favorite pastimes. Recently she had taken great pleasure in shopping for her granddaughter, one of her last purchases was a pair of matching kitchen aprons for them both.
Her backyard garden was her private paradise. She spent decades sculpting the space into a retreat, enlisting her husband and son to help, though they had trouble keeping up with her. Weeding the garden, pruning trees and fending off deer were important daily rituals for her. It was here that she felt a sense of prayerful peace and spent many quiet mornings reading the liturgy of the hours.
Janis was diagnosed with Multiple Myeloma 26 months ago, but rather than letting this disease define her final years, she continued to work until the day of her death. She was a force of nature, a true inspiration to all that crossed her path, a pillar of strength and faith to her family and community, with an unforgettable smile that could light up a room.