Jimmy Carter photo

Jewish High Holy Days Statement by the President.

September 22, 1978

On the eve of the High Holy Days, Rosalynn and I extend our heartfelt greetings to all our fellow citizens of the Jewish faith. Rosh Hashonah and Yore Kippur are supreme moments of moral and spiritual stocktaking, both in personal and in community life.

Few utterances of the human spirit are more moving and ennobling than that found in the Jewish High Holiday prayer: "May they all (all people) form one companionship to do Thy Will with a single heart."

This message has a special urgency this year in the part of the world where the Western world's great religions, including Judaism, were born. The possibility of peace in the Middle East has seldom been greater. Whether that possibility is realized will depend on the degree to which all concerned can act, in the prayer's words, "with a single heart."

Human solidarity is based on profound respect for the right of each group to be itself and to be true to its own heritage and culture. This philosophy has been translated into reality in the religious pluralism and mutual caring which are distinctive features of American democracy.

Our 200-year-old American experience with unity in diversity may be the most important cultural and spiritual example we have to offer the world. American Jews have greatly added to that diversity and to the strength it has brought to our national life. It is with this in mind that Rosalynn and I extend our best wishes for a satisfying, peaceful, and happy New Year.

Jimmy Carter, Jewish High Holy Days Statement by the President. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/243282

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