A “tangible” love

When we hear that a person is deaf and blind or we meet them personally, we might feel all sorts of things like perplexity or bewilderment, and all sorts of questions can come up inside: How does he or she communicate? How does he or she get around? Is it possible to have a normal life when you are missing two such important senses as seeing and hearing?

People in this situation make us look at life in a completely different way. That was what happened to me when I met them. These brothers and sisters have made me realise just how lucky and privileged I am to have all five senses. I can hear Jesus saying to me through them´ “I am thirsty!”   I have discovered that it is Jesus who needs me there. God in them is more needy and poor than me. He has become destitute, asking me to give my life to reach these brothers and sisters.

Deaf and blind people are marking my consecration. I have to go at their pace and not mine; I have to adapt my way of life and the way I am to them. It means entering into another world every day and it is always new to me no matter how long I have known them for. It takes a long time to learn to put oneself in their shoes, to know what it means to face countless barriers everyday. They have to continually better themselves, go beyond themselves because there are not many things adapted for them.

What would I like to say about deaf and blind people?

They are people very loved by God and it is not their disability that defines them as people, but the fact that they are children of God. They are people in need of being loved and loving, sensitive to love and heartbreak. These brothers and sisters help us to discover other senses which we don’t normally consider as important. They have taught me how necessary touch is.

Jesus too appreciated the importance of the sense of touch in his relationships as he passed through the world doing good, healing and curing. Without touch, Jesus would not have cured the deaf-mute, the man born blind and many other sick people. Jesus chose touch to make his healings tangible. He loved without being afraid of catching a contagious disease, allowing himself to be affected by what each person goes through. Jesus´ touch gave back meaning to the lives of people in need of healing. With touch Jesus gave a new meaning to his words of love and harmony and inaugurated a new way of looking at the world and at each individual person. Jesus has healed the blindness that we carry inside from ignorance, from the wounds that we’ve suffered or from the weight of experience, that make us incapable of seeing beyond ourselves. When Jesus heals, he shows us reality. We are all brothers and sisters  and we all  need each other.

Odete Almeida


clwakeling2A “tangible” love