Watch: Selichot prayers at the President's Residence

Singer Yonatan Razel leads selichot prayers at the President Rivlin's residence in Jerusalem.

Hezki Baruch ,

Reuven Rivlin says selichot
Reuven Rivlin says selichot
Tomer Reichman

Israeli President Reuven Rivlin on Wednesday evening hosted selichot ceremony at the President's Residence in Jerusalem.

Leading the selichot was singer, writer, and composer Yonatan Razel.

Four hundred people participated in the ceremony, which is the fourth annual ceremony in the President's Residence. Among the guests were soldiers in the IDF's Nahal Haredi unit, students from pre-military academies, and worshipers who pray in the neighborhood synagogue.

"Today, we must not only think about our own actions, but about our entire community and all of Israeli society," Rivlin said. "Yes, it is sometimes hard here. Sometimes it is very hard. But there is no excuse for the sins we do with our tongues, with our words - when we harm entire sectors of society, large groups, those people who don't think like us."

"From a national perspective as well, each of us must ask forgiveness for things he has said and done to his friends. This year, national discussions several times crossed the line of logical thinking and good taste, and strayed from the straight and proper. These sins were committed with our lips.

"All of us want a safe country, and all of us want good lives - even if we choose different paths. We have achieved many of these goals in the seventy years since Israel was founded. We must balance these accounts as well - fully, and with honesty and integrity.

"Afterwards, we can put everything else aside, burn the accounts, and start over, with a fresh page for the new year. I wish all of the synagogue's regular worshipers, and all of the guests who came this year for selichot, a good and swet year. May you be sealed [in the Book of Life]."

Watch the full video (including Hebrew speeches) here: