A Miracle 18 Years in the Making
Today's Miracle Monday is a testimony of healing from Sister Rose Bonaduce.
Back in February 1997, I was not feeling well and experiencing some concerning symptoms. I saw my doctor, and he immediately scheduled me for a same-day MRI. By that evening, I was diagnosed with a 4-centimeter benign brain tumor that was encroaching on my right optic nerve.
My very first thought was that I needed to be anointed. On Sunday, I went to the Levittown, Pennsylvania, Branch, and because I did not want to alarm my parents and children, I asked for prayer in the back room. It would be a year before my husband, Joe, and I told anyone what was going on with me.
It was to be a long year ahead. This is where my 18-year journey with Christ and my tumor began.
The tumor was large and inoperable, too close to my optic nerve to attempt surgery, and if they did, there was more than a 90 percent chance I would go blind in that eye. Radiation was not possible because if they missed and hit the optic nerve, then I would be blind in that eye. So, my options at this point were very limited — or none at all.
Over the years, I consulted with many surgeons, and they all said they would not operate on me. I did see an endocrinologist who prescribed a medication that was successful at times in shrinking tumors like mine. Unfortunately, the side effects made me sick 24 hours a day, seven days a week. I was nauseous all the time, vomiting half the time, and dizzy and tired all the time. I could barely get out of bed each day.
I had been anointed many times over the past five months, praying for the Lord to heal me or find a medication that would shrink this tumor and keep me from losing my eyesight.
At one particular endocrinology appointment, after many months of being sick, I found myself really annoyed. My husband and I had waited for over two hours for the doctor to arrive. I told her I couldn’t stand the medication anymore, so she advised there was another one I could try that showed good success with shrinking benign brain tumors, but she wouldn’t prescribe it to me because it was too expensive for my insurance company.
You can guess what happened next. I decided not to go back. I left that day without a doctor — there were few endocrinologists in our area — and no name for the medication she'd told me about. My old medication would run out in two months.
Again, Joe and I went into prayer. By this time, almost a year had passed from my diagnosis. It was Region Conference in our area, and our family went on Sunday. I was not feeling well and almost didn't go. I was nauseous and vomiting off and on all the night before, but I knew if I made the effort, the Lord would make the day a special blessing for us.
About 20 minutes into the service, Brother Joe Benyola got up and pointed to me and said, "Sister Rose, I don’t know what's going on, but I feel very strongly that you need to be anointed this morning." I looked at Joe and asked, "Did you tell him?" and he said, "No, not at all."
I was anointed that day, and by the time the service ended, I felt much better and enjoyed the day with my family.
The next day, I went to work at the hospital, and one of my coworkers who knew my situation told me that a new endocrinologist would be opening her practice in three weeks. I called and got one of the first appointments with her.
After I told her my history and story, she immediately knew which medication the other doctor was talking about and wrote me a prescription. She told me the only obstacle we would have is if it ever stopped working.
Over the next 18 years, I took this medication, and it shrunk the tumor to the size of a pinhead, which she called a seed. Halfway through the 16th year, she said that if this medication hadn't got rid of the seed by now, it may never get rid of it. This medication made me sick, but I only had to take it three days a week at bedtime so the impact was not as bad.
Two and a half years ago, I went for my six-month checkup, and I had my second MRI in a year, which was unusual, but I trusted my doctor, so I never questioned it. She had gradually brought me down to one dose a week because the tumor was just a pinpoint, and since no growth had happened in five years, I just needed a maintenance dose. (I was thrilled to only get sick once a week.)
I had naturally been anointed in the branch that previous Sunday before the MRI. When I walked into her office, I felt a different atmosphere than I had ever felt.
Everyone in the office was smiling. The doctor placed a series of MRIs up on a light board. She smiled and said, "Those are your last two MRIs. You have been on a maintenance dose for six months now, and you have had two MRIs in a year, and there is no seed and absolutely no tumor growth in your head. I didn’t want to give you false hope, and that's why I waited for a second MRI, but I truly believe you got your miracle."
She was hugging me and crying as hard as I was.
I went for one more MRI, and with no tumor, she took me completely off the medication, and she then notified me that due to family issues she was closing her practice. I truly know the Lord led me to her office. Today I am still tumor free, and I have full 20/20 vision in both of my eyes.
I cannot praise the Lord enough for carrying me and my family through this journey. Faith in the Lord, my family, and my church family are what carried me through my darkest hours. I am truly thankful for everyone who prayed for me.
Continue to keep me and my family in prayer. I do have another condition with my kidneys, but the Lord is carrying me through that as well.
Your Journey With God
Did today's Miracle Monday remind you of a journey that you walked with the Lord? We'd love to hear about it.
This article has undergone ministry review and approval.