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Be opened: the healing of a dumb and deaf man

Sunday, 23rd Week in Ordinary Time
Daily Readings: Mk. 7: 31 – 37

Reflection Date: September 5, 2021

Mark records the people's reaction to the healing of a deaf man who has a speech impediment. Mark echoes the words of Isaiah, who had prophesized around 700 before the birth of Jesus: "Then will the eyes of the blind be opened, the ears of the deaf are cleared; then will the lame leap like a stag, then the tongue of the dumb will sing" (Isaiah 35: 5 – 6).

If we read the book of Isaiah and comprehend his writings, most of the oracles of Isaiah of deliverance were addressed initially to Israelites languishing in exile in foreign lands. Quite interestingly, many of the oracles which were addressed to Emmanuel (God with us) saw the light of the day through Jesus.

In a very bold manner, the prophet had spoken of God's forgiveness, the restoration of the people, and their return to the promised land. Salvation was pictured in the healing of physical infirmities. Jesus comes to announce the good news of God's salvation. His healings point not only to His divine power but also to the fact that with and in Him, God's salvation proclaimed through the prophets has finally arrived.

The word "Ephphata" is further used at the Sacrament of Baptism, wherein the Priest, by placing his hand on the ears and mouth, acclaims ephphata – meaning be opened.

The words of the people: "He has done all things well; He even makes the deaf hear and the mute speak," should give us a sense of joy and happiness: knowing and believing that Jesus is close at hand to listen to our pleas. Let us be persistent in our prayers and pleading with Him.

Joseph Cardozo SJ | Contributor  



Radio Veritas Asia (RVA), a media platform of the Catholic Church, aims to share Christ. RVA started in 1969 as a continental Catholic radio station to serve Asian countries in their respective local language, thus earning the tag “the Voice of Asian Christianity.”  Responding to the emerging context, RVA embraced media platforms to connect with the global Asian audience via its 21 language websites and various social media platforms.

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