Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

3/22/2013 (1 year ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Extensive surgeries remove reminders of boyfriend's vicious attack

Stabbed more than 100 times by an ex-boyfriend, Ilianexy Morales would see harsh reminders of the attack every time she looked in the mirror. Now, thanks to the work of volunteer plastic surgeons, Morales can now hold her head high. After 17 surgeries, including one to reattach her partially-severed arms, Morales can now move on with her life after the 2005 attack.

Left with scars over her face, Ilianexy Morales had a highly visual reminder of the vicious attack. 'I didn't look like me,' she told TV reporters. 'I would hide a lot. I felt really ashamed of myself even though it was not my fault.

Left with scars over her face, Ilianexy Morales had a highly visual reminder of the vicious attack. "I didn't look like me," she told TV reporters. "I would hide a lot. I felt really ashamed of myself even though it was not my fault.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

3/22/2013 (1 year ago)

Published in Living Faith

Keywords: plastic surgery, abusive relationships, Face to Face, dentistry


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Face to Face, the charitable arm of the American Academy of Facial, Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery pooled their skills to aid the New York resident.

"It has really, really changed my life," Morales says. "Before, I was extremely shameful to be around people. [The surgery] seemed like a dream but it was real."

While in her twenties, Morales met the man who would become her attacker. The couple soon began a serious relationship and he offered to support her family. Her boyfriend encouraged her to give up work as a medical assistant so she could care full-time for her then four-year-old daughter and her bed-ridden mother, ABC News reported.

After three years of the emotionally abusive relationship, she told him it was over and that she was leaving him for good. Her boyfriend later stabbed her dozens of times in a frenzied attack.

Authorities arrived and arrested the boyfriend, who is now serving a 15-year prison sentence.

Left with scars over her face, Morales had a highly visual reminder of the vicious attack. "I didn't look like me," she told TV reporters. "I would hide a lot. I felt really ashamed of myself even though it was not my fault.

"I... accepted what had happened. My main problem was seeing myself in the mirror. When I saw all the scars, I felt like I was looking at another person."

Face to Face, based in Alexandria, Virginia began working with Morales in 2010. Face to Face gives around 1,500 surgeries each year to women who have been victims of domestic abuse, helping those who have suffered acid attacks, gun shot wounds and broken jaws and noses.

Doctors work with local shelters to find women who cannot afford the surgery or the associated fees. In order to qualify, women need to have undergone therapy and have been out of the abusive relationship for some time.

Dr. Andrew Jacono, a New York City facial and reconstructive surgeon, was the doctor who donated his skills to perform seven hours of surgery on Morales' face and neck.

Using "flap surgery," Jacono took skin from other parts of her body to cover the scars. He said the results were "beautiful" and "gave her a lot of confidence."

Morales said that thanks to Jacono, her life has changed immeasurably. As well as her facial and neck surgery, she also got new teeth from a New York dentist, Dr. Laura Torrado.

Morales is currently in a stable relationship and works as a professional makeup artist.

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


2014 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for November 2014
Lonely people:
That all who suffer loneliness may experience the closeness of God and the support of others.
Mentors of seminarians and religious: That young seminarians and religious may have wise and well-formed mentors.



Comments


More Living Faith

Take the Catholic Online Thanksgiving Challenge! Watch

Image of Reaching out to others is precisely the way to show that we are thankful for what we have.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Thanksgiving is supposed to be a holiday filled with family and food, often spent on televised parades and football, and naps after lunch. Kids play in the yard or the streets as everybody generally has a good time. However, this is not the case for millions of ... continue reading


Pope says he's willing to speak to Islamic State - says nations are likewise guilty of 'terrorism' Watch

Image of After addressing the European Parliament and the Council of Europe, Pope Francis also told journalists that the threat of terrorism was not the only horror weighing on the world.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Asked about the possibilities of discussion with Islamic State, Pope Francis said, "I never count anything as lost. Never. Never close the door. It's difficult, you could say almost impossible, but the door is always open." The Pontiff went forward to say that ... continue reading


Unborn, terminally ill and elderly are treated as objects in Europe, Pope Francis says Watch

Image of If we uphold the dignity of the person we are acknowledging the

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

"Despite talk of human rights, too many people are treated as objects in Europe: unborn, terminally ill, and the elderly," Pope Francis said. Speaking at the European Union Parliament in Strasbourg, the pontiff said that "We're too tempted to throwaway lives we ... continue reading


Church recognizes six new saints as Pope Francis canonizes in Sunday ceremony, speaking about how we too shall be judged Watch

Image of Indian well-wishers gather at the Vatican for the Canonization ceremony.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Pope Francis has canonized six new saints, two Indians and four Italians, praising their lives as "extraordinary" and reminding us all that we will be judged by how we treat others. VATICAN CITY (Catholic Online) - Pope Francis recognized six new saints on Sunday, ... continue reading


Pope says church must extend help to immigrants, 'so that all may be treated as children of God' Watch

Image of The world must now recognize the advantages of migration. Host countries get new workers to meet production needs,

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Speaking to the 300 participants in the Vatican-sponsored World Congress on the Pastoral Care of Migrants, the Pope says that the Catholic Church "is a mother without limits and without borders." He says that the church must welcome and assist all of God's children, ... continue reading


Feast of Christ the King and Advent: What Does it Mean? Watch

Image of The Church really IS the Mystical Body of the Risen Christ. That Body is inseparably joined to the Head. Jesus Christ is alive, he has been raised, and he continues His redemptive mission now through the Church, of which we are members. As we choose to actually live our lives liturgically, not just go through the motions, we can move through life in the flow of the liturgical calendar. We can experience the deeper mystery and meaning of life, now made New in Jesus Christ, the One who is the Way, the Truth and the Life. (John 14:6,7) Jesus Christ is King! Jesus Christ is meant to become the Lord of our whole lives, and inform the very pattern of how we live them.

By Deacon Keith A Fournier

On November 23rd we celebrate the Feast of Christ the King. It is one of many opportunities the Catholic Liturgical Church year offers to each of us consider the creature which is called time, receive it as a gift and begin to really live differently. Yet, for ... continue reading


Two bishops dine and dialogue with peace activists

Image of War doesn't decide who is right, just who is left.

By Tony Magliano

During the recent U.S. Catholic bishops fall assembly in Baltimore, two bishops decided to forego the military chaplains dinner sponsored by the U.S. Army Chief of Chaplains Office, and attended instead a simple supper and discussion on peacemaking. On the evening of ... continue reading


'God always forgives, but the earth does not,' Pope warns Watch

Image of The Pope urged the world's leaders to rein in their greed and help the hungry.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A doomsday scenario in which Mother Nature would exact her revenge is possible, even likely, Pope Francis warns. The pontiff was speaking out against the exploitation of natural resources for profit. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The Pope urged the world's ... continue reading


Pope Francis' special message: Why Poverty? 'And while we speak of new rights, the hungry remain'

Image of When we give our loaves and fishes to Christ, there is no end to the Good that can come from it.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Pope Francis has asked the world to do more to help those who suffer from hunger and malnutrition. Despite gains made in infrastructure and outpourings of food, too many people with plenty have done too little to help. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - With ... continue reading


How do you raise a good, upstanding child? With daily prayers, weekly church attendance and the knowledge of God Watch

Image of Billy Graham, now 96, has reached out to millions with his joyous words of the truth of God and Jesus Christ.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Reverend Billy Graham, the world famous television evangelist and founder and chairman of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, has said that the reason the world seems to be in such dire straits is that children are not being raised right. LOS ANGELES, CA ... continue reading


All Living Faith News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Revelation 18:1-2, 21-23; 19:1-3, 9
1 After this, I saw another angel come down from ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 100:2, 3, 4, 5
2 serve Yahweh with gladness, come into his presence ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 21:20-28
20 'When you see Jerusalem surrounded by armies, then ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for November 27th, 2014 Image

St. James Intercisus
November 27: James was a favorite of King Yezdigerd I of Persia and a ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter