Jesus is in pagan territory when a man is brought to him for healing. The man is deaf and unable to speak clearly – isolated from society, because he can’t express himself. The story clearly shows us Jesus’ compassion for the man, reaching out to him with a healing touch, and sighing as he looks to heaven for a cure. He speaks a word – unusually, Mark gives us the word in Jesus’ own language, Aramaic – and the man is freed of his impediment and enabled to speak for himself.
There are many people in our world who are silenced; by disability, by poverty, by lack of education, by the prejudice of others. Now, movements are arising that harness the power of the internet to allow the silent to speak. Shamefully, many victims of abuse have also been silenced by those holding positions of trust in the Church. There can be no justice until every member of society can speak out and be heard. Jesus is the healer who loosens the tongues of the poor and powerless.