Passover seder at the White House

 

Pete Souza

President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama host a Passover Seder dinner in the Old Family Dining Room of the White House, April 3, 2015.

On Friday night, for the seventh year in a row, President and Mrs. Obama hosted the annual White House seder. The seder provides an opportunity for the First Family to join in retelling the story of the Israelites' arduous journey through the desert from slavery in Egypt to liberation in the Promised Land.

In recounting the story, they joined their guests in performing the seder rituals and followed the Haggadah's command that we see ourselves as though we personally were liberated from Egypt. And they acknowledged how this story has inspired generations of Americans in the struggle for civil rights.

In a special video message, President Obama offered his warmest wishes to people across the country and around the world celebrating the Easter and Passover holidays. He reflected on Friday night's seder and the story of the Exodus, and talked about the hope that this season brings.

"Whether we're Christian, Jewish, Muslim, Sikh, Hindu, or Buddhist; whether faith in God shapes our daily lives completely or not at all, we believe that with common effort, and shared sacrifice, a brighter future is just around the bend," the President said. "And we embrace our obligation to do something meaningful, something lasting, with the precious time we've been allotted on this Earth."


The president also encouraged all Americans to "pause and give thanks for the chance to live in a country where everyone has the right to worship and pray and love as they choose."

 

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