Dear Friend of NJDC,
Tonight, as we gather at Passover seders throughout the world and remember our exodus from Egypt, recite the four questions and nosh on Passover delicacies, the First Family will be doing the same.
The Obama family will gather with some of their closest Jewish friends and several of the President's most trusted Jewish advisors to celebrate the third annual White House Passover seder, which will be led by none other than President Barack Obama himself. Obama's seders have garnered a reputation for following the traditions in the Haggadah, with every ritual of the seder being carried out (Sasha and Malia typically recite the four questions). Obama and the White House kitchen staff also make sure that the food served on the table would live up to your grandmother's standards -- even the gefilte fish. Below is a photo from last year's seder.
Pete Souza/White House
Obama has been hosting Passover seders since his Presidential campaign and has made a point to keep the tradition going as President. All American Jews should take pride in knowing that our President deeply respects Jewish tradition -- so much so that he and First Lady Michele Obama enthusiastically celebrate with us multiple times during the year, including during May -- which has been designated as Jewish Heritage Month. And all of this is in addition to the intimate meetings that regularly occur between Obama and Jewish communal leaders -- including leadership from an array of American Jewish organizations, including NJDC.
Last Friday, Obama extended his Passover greetings:
The story of Passover - which recalls the passage of the children of Israel from bondage and repression to freedom and liberty - inspires hope that those oppressed and enslaved can become free. The seder, with its rich traditions and rituals, instructs each generation to remember its past, while appreciating the beauty of freedom and the responsibility it entails.
This year, that ancient instruction is reflected in the daily headlines as we see modern stories of social transformation and liberation unfolding in the Middle East and North Africa. Against the backdrop of change, we continue to pray for peace between Israel and her neighbors, while reaffirming our enduring commitment to Israel's security.
As Jewish families gather for this joyous celebration of freedom, let us all be thankful for the gifts that have been bestowed upon us ...
On behalf of the National Jewish Democratic Council, best wishes for a Happy Passover -- Chag Kasher v'Sameach!
David A. Harris
President and CEO