A Rosh Hashanah greeting from WJC President Ronald S. Lauder to the global Jewish community

02 Sep 2021

Dear Friends,

As the Jewish New Year 5782 approaches, I would like to send you and your loved ones my warmest wishes.

Rosh Hashana is a time of hope, of renewal, and of looking to the future. Now more than ever, we hope and pray that better times are on the horizon and that the world can emerge soon from the COVID pandemic.

The sounding of the shofar at the conclusion of Yom Kippur reverberates with the message “LeShana Haba’ah BeYerushalayim – Next Year in Jerusalem!” It is my fervent hope that in the new year we will once again be able to travel and meet together in person, not only in Jerusalem, but also in all other corners of the Jewish world.

This time of year is also a period of reflection. The plaintive blast of the shofar exhorts all Jews to engage in introspection. In looking back over 5781, I could not be prouder of our WJC family of Jewish communities who have stood by and supported one another through this ongoing crisis. We Jews have always been willing to sacrifice for one another.
The shofar, a ram’s horn, signifies the ultimate sacrifice that our ancestor Abraham was willing to make; at the last moment he was given a reprieve and offered up a ram instead.

The late Rabbi Jonathan Sacks z’l, who, sadly, left us this past year, wrote, “Life may be hard, but it can still be sweet the way the challah and the apple are on Rosh Hashanah when we dip them in honey.”

It is in that spirit that I wish you all a Sweet, Happy and Healthy New Year,

Shana Tova U‘Metuka!