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Hopes and Prayers at the Start of the Jewish New Year

Sunday 28th September 2008

The Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams, sent a greeting to Jewish leaders and communities for the festival of Rosh Hashanah, marking the start of the Jewish New Year.

In his greeting the Archbishop spoke of the "mutual and public support for the Millennium Development Goals" at the Lambeth Conference, and also paid tribute to "the way in which all the religions and their leaders can act together for the common good of humanity". 

The full text of the greeting is below:

To our Jewish friends in the household of faith

As you move from one year towards another and into the High Holy days, marking the creation of humankind, I am glad once again to be able to extend my warm greetings of friendship and appreciation to you on the occasion of Rosh Hashanah.

We have been able to share much together in this year past which has been significant, enjoyable and fruitful for the future and I look to be able to build on this in the year ahead.

In the Lambeth Conference held in Canterbury the bishops of the Anglican Communion were able to welcome Sir Jonathan Sacks to address them and with Rabbi Dr Tony Bayfield and Rabbi Danny Rich to share in mutual and public support for the Millennium Development Goals in the presence of the Prime Minister. These were both an unprecedented witness to our friendship and esteem, and also a sign of the way in which all the religions and their leaders can act together for the common good of humanity.

This year has also seen the continuation and development of our Dialogue with the Chief Rabbinate of Israel with meetings of the Anglican Jewish Commission in Canterbury and the opportunity to welcome Chief Rabbis Amar and Metzger to Lambeth Palace again.

Sir Jonathan Sacks in his address to the bishops of the Anglican Communion, spoke of covenant and of the context from which it may arise, referring to covenants of fate and of faith. My hope and prayer is that the years ahead will continue to see our covenantal relationship strengthened by faithful commitment and by our shared journey through the world.

May the year ahead be good for each of our communities, for the religions of the world and for humanity.

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