The first Sunday is always full of meeting people and getting settled, and it can feel pretty busy sometimes, even for those of us who have done it for many years. That’s why it’s so nice to close our first day — as we do every day — with our evening collection.
Evening collection is a special time at FMC, and one of the elements that FMC has in common with many other Quaker summer camps, but not many (if any!) other music camps. It’s a period of about 15 minutes that is generally silent, though people may speak in that silence if they feel moved to share a message. It’s part of what campers and staff members alike treasure about Friends Music Camp.
Tonight, after a full day with a lot of interaction, it felt amazing to sit in that deep silence with our whole community and to have time to be in each others’ presence and perhaps the presence of something larger than all of us. It was a sweet, still silence, and even our new campers seemed to join right in and feel part of it. One older camper spoke about making the choice to return to FMC this summer and how important this month was to him both musically and personally, and I think his sentiment was felt by many in the room.
We’re looking forward to a wonderful month together, full of many times to make music, and many times to be still and listen.