Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

3/22/2013 (2 years 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 (2 years 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'


Copyright 2015 - Distributed by THE CALIFORNIA NETWORK

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for February 2016
Universal:
That prisoners, especially the young, may be able to rebuild lives of dignity.
Evangelization: That married people who are separated may find welcome and support in the Christian community.



Comments


More Living Faith

Worldwide Christian persecution among four vital issues behind Pope and Russian patriarch's visit Watch

Image of Both the Catholic Church and Russian Orthodox Church have spoken out clearly to stop the

By Andrea Gagliarducci, CNA/EWTN News

The first, historic meeting between a Pope and a Patriarch of the Russian Orthodox Church does not come from nowhere. Both the Russian Orthodox Patriarchate and the Holy See have been working on such an event for decades. Vatican City (CNA/EWTN News) - In at ... continue reading


Can we set aside our differences?: Catholics and Russian Orthodox Patriarch unite for the first time in 1,000 years Watch

Image of Patriarch Kirill will meet Pope Francis on this historic day (AP).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

The Vatican recently announced the historic meeting between Pope Francis and the head of the Russian Orthodox Church, Patriarch Kirill. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The meeting is set for Friday and will be the first time the heads of the Catholic and Russian ... continue reading


Oldest copy of Old Testament recognized as world treasure Watch

Image of The oldest surviving copy of the Hebrew Bible has been officially recognized.

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

The oldest surviving copy of the Old Testament was officially recognized as a world treasure by the United Nations Educations, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The Aleppo Codex is the oldest surviving copy of the Hebrew ... continue reading


More than a thousand 'super confessors' released by Pope Francis to tackle 'reserved sins' Watch

Image of One of the Pope's

By Catholic Online (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Those who commit "reserved sins," transgressions that are deemed especially egregious by the Catholic Church, will have another chance this Jubilee Year. Those who have committed such sins previously only pardonable by the Pope may now seek out the 1,142 ... continue reading


'What could happen if every church would rise up in prayer': Christians join before U.S. Supreme Court to call for prayer Watch

Image of Texas Loves Life stands to protect the unborn (bound4life).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Christians stand together outside the U.S. Supreme Court to call other believers to pray the pro-life law passes. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - While the Supreme Court considers a Texas pro-life law, Texas Loves Life calls for Christians to pray for the fates of ... continue reading


If 'Jubilee doesn't arrive to the pockets, it's not a true Jubilee,' Pope Francis says Watch

Image of In his continued catechesis on mercy as seen in Scripture, the Pope noted how the Jubilee year is an

By Elise Harris, CNA/EWTN News

For Pope Francis, mercy is not just spiritual, but is something that ought to be expressed in concrete acts of service and in sharing one's goods with the poor, which was a key tradition during Jubilee years throughout Scripture. Vatican City (CNA/EWTN News) - ... continue reading


'You can't have Jesus': NASA accused of censoring use of Christ's name Watch

Image of NASA announces the use of Jesus' name in e-communications is a violation of the First Amendment (SacredHeart).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Members of the Praise and Worship Club, composed of NASA employees, were shocked to receive a notice from NASA ordering they cease to include Jesus' name in their religious e-mails. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The use of Jesus' name came up in May 2015, when ... continue reading


MAKE YOURSELF COUNT! Complete this quick Ash Wednesday survey

Image of Take the Ash Wednesday survey so we can better serve your needs.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online is conducting a global survey on Ash Wednesday practices. Each reader is asked to participate once. The survey will take less than a minute to complete. The results of the survey will help Catholic Online determine how best to serve your needs in the ... continue reading


Santa Muerte gains popularity throughout Mexico - Will Pope Francis react during his visit? Watch

Image of Santa Muerte's popularity has spread throughout South America (Pinterest).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Despite the Catholic Church openly saying Santa Muerte is not recognized as a saint, the death saint continues to spread in popularity among Mexican citizens. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - "Santa Muerte is an absurdity," Cardinal Norberto Rivera, Mexico's ... continue reading


Bible-themed luxury resort to be built in San Diego? Watch

Image of Televangelist seeks to build Bible-themed resort (YouTube).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Televangelist Morris Cerullo has been attempting to build a Bible-themed luxury resort for the past few years - and now there is only one more hurdle to jump. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - After purchasing a foreclosed Mission Valley hotel, Cerullo's plans for ... continue reading


All Living Faith News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

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

Subscribe to Catholic OnlineYouTube Channel

the FEED
by Catholic Online

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Deuteronomy 26:4-10
4 'The priest will then take the basket from your hand and lay it before ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 91:1-2, 10-11, 12-13, 14-15
1 You who live in the secret place of Elyon, spend your nights in the ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 4:1-13
1 Filled with the Holy Spirit, Jesus left the Jordan and was led by the ... Read More

Reading 2, Romans 10:8-13
8 What does it say, then? The word is very near to you; it is in your ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for February 14th, 2016 Image

St. Valentine
February 14: Click Here for St. Valentine Prayer's Saint ... Read More