To believe the gospel we, first of all, need to hear it, and once we have if we do believe it we will want to speak it, so that others can hear it.  In today`s gospel Jesus restores a man`s hearing, and cures an impediment in his speech.  It must have been easy from this point on for this man to believe the good news and pass it on to others.

But in addition to this, it would have enabled him to communicate much more effectively with others than it had been before.  Talking to others and being heard by them is very important for us, and we`ll do this better if we ourselves also listen attentively to what others have got to say to us.  Some people talk at other people rather than to them, and don`t give pause so that they can make a response.

Everybody should have the opportunity to speak and to be heard.  There should be room for disagreement and discussion, even argument.  Political discussion in our society is governed too much by political correctness, this undermines democracy.  Do we still think democracy is the best political system to live by?  I think so. I think it`s worth listening to others and considering what they have to say. I think our freedom depends on it.