"In that spirit, the Jewish tradition teaches us that one of the most important duties we have during this period is the act of reconciliation. We’re called to seek each other out and make amends for those moments when we may not have lived up to our values as well as we should."
Obama said he hoped the holiday would inspire Americans to help the needy.
"At a time when our public discourse can too often seem harsh, when society too often focuses on what divides us instead of what unites us, I hope that Americans of all faiths can take this opportunity to reach out to those who are less fortunate; to be tolerant of our neighbors; and to recognize ourselves in one another," Obama continues. "And as a nation, let us be mindful of those who are suffering, and renew the unbreakable bond we share with our friends and allies — including the State of Israel.
"In that spirit, Michelle and I wish you and your families a sweet year full of health, happiness, and peace. L’Shana Tovah."