US President Barack Obama released a recorded message to the Jewish community on Friday, wishing it a happy new year as it prepares to ring in Rosh Hashana.
"Jewish tradition teaches us that, for the next ten days, the Book of Life is open," the president said. "As millions of Jews ask God to inscribe their name in that book, we recognize how much lies beyond our control. Yet during these Days of Awe we also recognize our tremendous power to make a difference, in our lives and in our world.”
“As human beings we’re not required to be perfect, but we are required to atone where we’ve fallen short, and to do whatever we can to avoid repeating the mistakes of the past,” Obama said.
“Faith is hard, hope is hard, peace is hard, but right now the book is open, not just for God but for us. As a community bound together by shared values, side by side with friends and allies like the State of Israel.”
“Let’s write the next chapter in a way that speaks to the best of our traditions and the highest of our ideals. Let’s usher in a sweet new year, full of health and happiness for our families, friends and neighbors, whether they live down the street or halfway around the world,” said Obama.
“Happy New Year to everyone and from my family to yours, Shana Tova.”