Thursday, July 9, 2009

And A Hush Fell Over the Camp....

 Today is Friday. Hayom yom can feel the very air of the camp begin to change.
As Friday (Yom Shishi) begins, there is an excitement, an electricity in the air. The campers know it, the faculty know it, the counselors know's all around us.
Shabbat is coming.
Shabbat is coming!

As the afternoon comes, the camp begins to clean up, to prepare, to take showers and put on pretty dresses and shiny clean polo shirts. Hair is combed and fingernails are cleaned...sometimes.

The strumming of guitars begins to fill the air as Shabbat Walks begin, welcoming Shabbat all around camp. The sound of "Shabbat Shalom!" fills the air and friends who saw each other only moments before greet each other with kisses and hugs, their world transformed by the change over into Shabbat.

Together as a unit we pray, welcoming the Sabbath Queen, and then the whole camp, all the units, gather together for dinner. There is an overwhelming din and then a hush falls over the camp as the candles are lit and the blessings said over wine and challah.

The evening truly culminates in singing - Shabbat Shira, the Shabbat song session - is both rowdy and controlled, celebratory and exhilirating, full of passion and spirit and love and joy. Music fills the camp, fills the air, fills our souls. We drink it in, knowing that we can only have this experience, this moment for 8 Shabbats of the year (and for some of us only 2...), knowing that this community only comes together just like this for just this week. Last week, next week, we'll be different. But today, here, now, we are together just like this.

We ARE Shabbat.
Shabbat Shalom from OSRUI!

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