The Honourable Jason Kenney, Minister of Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism, issued the following statement recognizing Rosh Hashanah:
“Today marks the beginning of one of the most important holidays for Jewish people around the world.
“Commonly referred to as the Jewish New Year, Rosh Hashanah is the start of the civil year according to the Hebrew calendar. It commemorates the creation of the world. Rosh Hashanah is the first of the High Holidays, which are days specifically set aside to focus on atonement and repentance and which conclude with the holiday of Yom Kippur.
“The holiday is characterized by the blowing of the shofar, a trumpet made from a ram’s horn. Festive meals during Rosh Hashanah traditionally include apples dipped in honey, to symbolize the hope for a sweet new year.
“For all Canadians, this important observance provides an excellent opportunity to reflect on the tremendous contributions that the Jewish community has made to this country’s rich and diverse heritage.
“As Prime Minister Harper has said, ‘Pluralism is the principle that binds our diverse peoples together.’
“As Minister of Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism, I extend my best wishes to all those celebrating over the next two days, and I hope the new year brings everyone health, happiness, and prosperity.