At Rosh Hashanah, a time of celebration, repentance and recommitment, I would like to convey a message of my warmest good wishes to Jewish friends, colleagues and communities here in the United Kingdom and around the world.
The beginning of a new year offers an opportunity to give thanks to God for the gift of life and for the blessings of the last year. As you mark the anniversary of the creation of Adam and Eve, we are mindful of our common humanity, and the need both to recognise that which unites us and to commit ourselves to work for reconciliation where there is pain and hurt.
It has been a matter of deep honour to work closely with the Jewish community in the past year. We were privileged to host the All Party Parliamentary Group Against anti-Semitism at Lambeth Palace back in February and to participate in the launch of their timely report into the prevalence of anti-Semitism within the United Kingdom. I was also deeply honoured to be invited to speak at the annual dinner of the Board of Deputies of British Jews and to celebrate its service and achievements.
At a time of insecurity and physical threat to Jewish communities within Europe, it has been deeply humbling as a President of the Council of Christians and Jews to welcome the creation and distribution of the ground-breaking resource of the ‘If Not Now, When?’ study material, which enables local Jewish groups to reflect, research and react in order to protect and defend the rights of persecuted Christian minorities in the Middle East.
I also marvel at the creative grassroots bridge-building community work of Near Neighbours projects throughout the country. The willingness to work with other faith communities on projects of social transformation is truly inspiring.
Rosh Hoshanah is a time for families and communities to celebrate together and an opportunity for thanksgiving, introspection and prayer for personal transformation. May I assure you of my prayers for peace, security and blessing for you all.
Archbishop of Canterbury