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Message on the Observance of Yom Kippur, 1993

September 24, 1993

My heartfelt greetings to all who are observing Yom Kippur in this momentous year of history and hope.

Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement, is a holy day that provides the opportunity to seek forgiveness and to enter the new year with a clean conscience and a clear purpose. It is a chance to seek pardon and to ask divine guidance for self-improvement. Yom Kippur emphasizes the importance of honoring the memories of loved ones no longer living, but still remembered. Above all, Yom Kippur recognizes the need to repair personal relationships—relationships with friends and family, with God, with those who live on in our memories, and with those for whom we may have previously felt animosity.

With the recent signing of the agreement between Israel and the Palestine Liberation Organization, this Yom Kippur is particularly significant. It is my wish that people of all cultures and faiths will pledge their active support and energy to help achieve a new era of peace and hope in the Middle East and for the entire world. This will take courage and commitment. As Foreign Minister Peres so eloquently stated at the signing ceremony, "Deep gaps call for lofty bridges."

On this most solemn day, let all of us reflect on the enormous challenges that lie ahead. Let us dedicate ourselves to the next generation, and together we will usher in a true season of peace.


William J. Clinton, Message on the Observance of Yom Kippur, 1993 Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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