“BUONA NOTTE GESU MIO –
TI DONO IL CUORE MIO PER LE MANI DI MARIA–
BUONA NOTTE GESU E MARIA”
GOOD NIGHT MY JESUS –
I GIVE YOU MY HEART BY THE HANDS OF MARY –
GOOD NIGHT JESUS AND MARY
By: Phil DeIullis
At mass during communion I would cry, all I would feel was deep sorrow. I knew I couldn’t receive it because I hadn’t gone to confession for over twenty years. I really considered Christ as the solution to my pain.
One day while sitting in my sisters’ kitchen, with a room full of genuinely good church Going people I blurted out that I hadn’t been to confession in over 20 years – No one fell silent, No one judged, In fact, they praised me for coming to the realization that I needed to go to confession. I needed God in my life. I knew that! I was scared, After all look at what I had done, Look at what I had been through, But I knew I needed to go!
So, after 20 years I went to confession – after my long walk with Father, I almost felt as if I could breathe again – I felt as if my anxiety had been lifted-I felt worthy, I felt clensed. My confession opened my eyes and heart to many realizations.
I didn’t know I had been in mourning – I didn’t know I needed healing – It never occurred to me that I was spiritually dead! It never occurred to me that my abortion was causing me so much pain! It never occurred to me how empty I was!
IT NEVER OCCURRED TO ME that I had never cried for the loss of my CHILD!!!!!!
For the first time I felt remorse. For the first time in my life I felt God forgave me for my actions against Him! God loves me even when I don’t love myself.
My journey after my confession included attending mass and participating in Church events. But deep within me I did not feel healed, I still felt empty!
Over a year ago, I had opened up about my life’s journey to two friends I had met At Church. In reality, this was more difficult than going to confess my sins too a priest. There was no judgment, but only their kind words: TO QUOTE THEM.
“in his goodness all things come to light and are healed. What defines you is who you are in the light of God – you are His precious child.”
And the other
“only love from the heavens from God, from our Lady, will heal you! You…reach out to her Always and she will protect you with her mantle.”
This testimony was not easy for me.
The hardest thing for all of us is to put our lives under a microscope for all to see.
HOWEVER, WHEN WE PUT OUR LIVES IN GODS HANDS – ALL THINGS ARE POSSIBLE
I hope you all understand the fragility of my life and my pain, I wanted to tell you my story as a witness to how God’s love and mercy can
Transform our lives. I finally understood there was nothing I could do that God would not love me for – He loves me unconditionally. There are many wounds still to be healed. But for the first time in my life I don’t feel empty, I feel hope, I feel love, I feel compassion,I feel joy….
I NO LONGER WALK ALONE!!!!
Now I understand what my special prayer means:
“BUONA NOTTE GESU MIO – TI DONO IL CUORE MIO PER LE MANI DI MARIA –
BUONA NOTTE GESU E MARIA”
GOOD NIGHT MY JESUS – I GIVE YOU MY HEART BY THE HANDS OF MARY –
GOOD NIGHT JESUS AND MARY
As I grew older, I craved more and more attention especially from men. I wanted to feel loved but I never did. I always felt like trash and believed that people treated me accordingly. I felt like my family didn’t love me and as each year passed I grew further And further apart from my family and from my friends. I always acted as if I didn’t care! It was easier!
My life was empty, It was loveless, full of greed and vain! I wanted it all! money! riches! The best of the best, designer clothes! shoes! cars! Beautiful skin, glamorous hair, a body that would make each and every man lust over me. My chief interests had always been in material comfort, I knew the price of everything and the value of nothing.
I would have stopped at nothing to achieve and get all of what I felt were the Greatest things that life had to offer. And this is how I valued and lived my life, the more I got the more I wanted and The more was never enough.
My actions, my feelings were the same as a cocaine addict, or that of an alcoholic, My life was filled with lies and secrets, what a destructive existence. But nothing absolutely nothing, could fill the void of love, Of happiness, Of peace, Of family and faith. In reality, I was falling into a dark black hole with nothingness and demons. I had nothing to give to anyone, especailly to myself.
So how can you begin a marriage when you have an empty heart? I wanted the Cinderella ‘happily ever after’ story. But, the beginning of my marriage was the end of my marriage. My husband never had access to my heart – how could he break it? After eight years of marriage, my husband left me for another woman. After the divorce, I dove more deeply into the false belief of fulfillment Of materialism and the attention of men. I deserved to be happy, God owed me! But with each passing day I grew further and further away from my family and GOD.
Years passed and tragedy struck my family! My niece suddenly passed away, months later my father died and soon after my mother survived a dreadful illness. Each of these heart wrenching tragedies left me feeling even emptier than before.
So the need to see my family became stronger and stronger. I started visiting my Mother, Who had just recently moved in with my sister and nephew! The more I visited, the more I wanted to see them. The need for family became important to me.
The defining moment came when I met some of the individuals in the Church community. I started connecting with individuals in a particular family – I questioned the church and its teachings – mostly, I asked questions as to why God would allow bad things to happen and why I needed to go to Church. They answered most of my questions – But the most important thing was the way I saw their family life reflected their Catholic beliefs – for the most part they lived what they preached. They respected and supported each other, they loved each other unconditionally. I especially saw and admired the image of the loving father at the helm.
Now I was beginning to feel that it was ok for me to go back to church. I wanted to go back to Church!
As I joined my family, Church became my thing to do above all else. My mother began to work for the parish Priests and our circle of Church friends became larger. When the priests’ would go to my mothers’ for dinner – I would have many opportunities to ask questions about our Catholic faith – and with the utmost LOVE, CHARITY, and RESPECT they Washed away all the misguided, misinformed concepts of The Catholic Faith as I knew it. As they left, they would always say, “WE WILL PRAY FOR YOU!”
I became involved with the Church, helping with the Passion Play, teaching catechism, and I attended a “Life in the Spirit” seminar And suddenly I felt amazing. I hadn’t fully converted, I just felt good.
This is the special prayer taught to me as a little girl. This is the prayer that comforted me to sleep every night as a child, This is the prayer that unknowing to me had the power to carry my heart through the trials and tribulations of my life.
I was taught to say my prayers before going to sleep – So every night I said, I say,
The Our Father, The Hail Mary and The Glory Be.
and Buona Notte Gesu....
I knew that sleep would not come to me unless I said those prayers, Especially “ti dono il cuore mio per le mani di Maria” Unknowingly it lifted my mind and my heart –
Now at 47, I know that God was always by my side, And always on my side. He knew how many times I would fall He knew how many times I would fail, And it never occurred to me that it didn’t matter how many times I disappointed him or let him down….he still loved me…. MANY TIMES I may have given up on me, but he never did. The power of prayer, I had no clue. I wish I knew then what I know now.
During most of my adult life – I carried a heavy weight in my heart. I felt as if I was always catching my breath: I constantly felt as if I was choking – Always struggling with all aspects of my life.
In order to understand why – we need to go back to when I was a little girl!
As I look at my pictures as a child, I now see how cute I was; I was olive skinned with a few freckles on my nose and long brown hair with natural blonde streaks.
Looking back at my childhood I feel sad – mostly because I really believed I wasn’t loved – I ALWAYS craved endless attention.
I even remember locking my baby cousin in the bathroom one day – Because everyone was paying too much attention to him and not to me!
Or when, I got a red turtleneck sweater, White and red crocheted skirt and white go-go boots for Christmas – OH HOW I LOVED THOSE BOOTS –
I remember thinking – NOW everyone will look at me, notice me!!!
Then I remember feeling slighted when my younger sister had To get the same outfit – down to those white go-go boots! As I hit my teenage years – the craving for attention didn’t subside – in fact, It increased and it took me on a sorrowful path.
When I was 13 – I visited my girlfriend, we used to sit on her porch And talk for hours. During one of our visits, her brother called me into the house. I felt so cool, this guy 14 years older than me was paying attention to me – He called me hunny. No one had ever called me an endearing name like hunny before. It felt good – I finally felt as if someone noticed me –I didn’t realize how Much my life would change from that moment on
I WAS RAPED!
Two months after that horrific time, I knew something was wrong. I had A stabbing sick pain in my stomach. My grandmother’s neighbor whom I had a close relationship with, noticed a change in me and took me to her gynecologist.
All I remember is that the Doctor was brutal, his office old, cold and dingy. The doctor was not gentle with me, and with a stone cold face he told me I was pregnant – He never asked what happened, he just assumed I was being promiscuous – As did everyone else!
Now I had to tell my family. It was one of the most heart wrenching things I needed to do –When I saw the look on my parents’ faces – I saw their disappointment I saw their pain. But not once did anyone ask me was I raped. I already thought that I didn’t have their love, now I felt as if I had nothing – Just disgust and shame!
AT 13, I HAD AN ABORTION.
After waking up from the surgery I never thought about it again – I thought about nothing ! I felt nothing! AND I NEVER FELT THE SAME WAY AGAIN!