2022 Gathering & Annual Sessions
April 13 – 17, 2022
some sessions will be hybrid for online participation
Warren Willis United Methodist Camp & Conference Center
4991 Picciola Road, Fruitland Park, FL 34751
our theme is
Welcome as you are
the invitation to inclusive, multi-generational community
Join Friends from all over the SEYM region and beyond for retreats, workshops, worship-sharing, the Walton Retreats and Lecture, intergenerational fun, a full Youth Program, and our Yearly Business Meeting Sessions. See the 2019 photo gallery>
Some sessions will also be offered online: business meetings, worship sharing, and the Walton Lecture. Register for virtual attendance here>
the J. Barnard Walton Lecture & Retreats
Wonder & Welcome:
Holding Our Family of Friends in the Light
will be presented by
Windy Cooler & Melinda Wenner Bradley
All of us belong to families: circles of kinship, of friendship, and of spiritual community. What stories do we carry about our families, our meetings, and our faith that invite or discourage wonder and welcome? How have our families modeled hospitality and boundaries, and when have we needed to find more support? How do our meetings nurture hospitality and boundaries and can we discern when to change?
In this year’s Walton Retreats and the Walton Lecture, we will make space to explore our familial, community, and spiritual relationships. We will take time to listen to our stories: to affirm and lament, to embrace deeper truth telling, to find the time to be tender, and to engage in supportive discernment about who we really are and want to be together.
Discernment is what Quakers do. We wonder, with curiosity and with awe. We welcome the truth with love. We embrace each other, like a family; we also hurt each other, like a family. We may listen but we don’t always hear each other very well. How can we invite authentic curiosity about our lives and hold our truth in love, in our homes, and in our meetings?
We want a vibrant multigenerational community, but what stands in the way? What lights the way?
Windy Cooler is an embraced public Friend whose ministry is held under the care of Sandy Spring Monthly Meeting, Baltimore Yearly. She is Pendle Hill’s 2020 Cadbury Scholar and a frequent guest of monthly and yearly meetings in the US where she has researched, lectured and given workshops on the connection between robust pastoral care responses, Quaker family life, and social justice in peer to peer ministry.
A current doctoral candidate at Lancaster Theological Seminary, her work incorporates ethnography and the Quaker tradition of discernment processes to help communities move forward in the Light. She lives with her husband Erik and son Ob in Greenbelt, MD, and has an adult daughter, Maggie.
Melinda Wenner Bradley (she/her) is an advocate for families in Quaker spaces. Her ministry weaves together her interests in children’s spiritual lives, all-ages program development, and support for parents and teachers in Quaker meetings and schools. She is a member of West Chester Meeting, and currently serves as Philadelphia Yearly Meeting’s Youth Religious Life Coordinator.
Melinda is a co-founder of the Quaker Religious Education Collaborative and the Director of Communications and Training for Faith & Play Stories. She co-authored and edited Faith & Play: Quaker Stories for Friends Trained in the Godly Play Method. Storytelling and facilitation grounded in “wondering” finds its way into almost everything she does – in children’s programs, intergenerational worship spaces, school classrooms, teacher workshops, and international gatherings of Quakers. Melinda co-authored a 2019 Friends Journal article with her children, I Am a Quaker.
Registration will be open March 1st – April 3rd (those attending virtually can register up to April 11th). Some spaces will be available for late registration. For questions or assistance with registration, please contact: Susan Wade, Registrar 727-821-5048 Susan Wade.
All the Details
Our 2022 Retreats invite us to share our stories. As you register for the retreats, you will be invited to share what is most on your heart, in a one on one confidential listening session based on the clearness process. In the retreats, brief selections from our collected testimonies will be shared, without attribution, as part of an extended process of worship sharing. Listening to our stories, hearing and feeling heard, can empower us to move past anxieties and release our burdens; to hear where we are as a community, and to discern the Life of the Meeting.
Registration & meals for youth attending with their families are free of charge, thanks to generous donors.
Our theme is “Welcome as You Are.”
Join us for workshops, games, crafts, and more…
Intergenerational Activities afternoons Thursday – Saturday • games, art, yoga, & play • All Ages worship • Intergenerational Community Night on Friday • intergenerational workshop • see bulletin board for each day’s activities & locations.
Wee Friends: Indoor & Outdoor Play & Story time • Toddlers to kindergarten • Every day
- Children must be picked up PROMPTLY from their program by their Parent/Guardian/Sponsor.
- The camp has NO play equipment: please bring toys, pillows & blankets!
Youth Program leaders, volunteer staff, and parents work together to create a community where all young Friends feel included. All youth are expected to participate in the youth program during their stay.
- Youth must attend with a parent, guardian, or a designated adult sponsor.
- Families sending their child/children with a Sponsor will pay both the registration and lodging fees for their youth.
- Youth need a parent/guardian signed Parental Consent, Medical Release, Media Release & Rules forms in order to register and be on campus. Bring completed forms with you. Download the Parental Consent forms here>
- The Gathering is our religious holiday! Parents wanting to have their youth excused from school can download the ‘Excuse Letter’ here>.
LIFE ENRICHMENT CENTER: Rooms have twin beds and private bath; bedding & towels are provided.
- Family occupancy: room to sleep 4 (double bed with bunk, plus twin bed). $34/adult/night
- Double occupancy, couples: $98/night (king bed) Children may sleep in their parents’ room on a mattress on the floor for $10/night.
- Double occupancy: $88/night (two twin beds)
- Singles, sharing a room: $44/adult/night. Sharing a room? You must list a roommate’s name when registering.
- Private (1-person) room: $64/night.
RV CAMPING: in the open area west of the Pavilion. $30/night,
TENT CAMPING: in the woods beyond the Pavilion. The area to the right of the Pavilion is reserved for SEYM. Sites are $16 /night.
DAY USE: For Friends only attending during the day. $7/person/day for site use.
Life Enrichment Center Dining
- Breakfast: 8:00 – 8:45 am $9.25/adult
- Lunch: 12:00 – 12:45 pm $10.25/adult
- Dinner: 5:30 – 6:15 pm $13.75/adult
Meals for Youth (under 18) are provided at no charge to families, paid for by the Trustees Youth Gathering Fund, with thanks to our generous donors!
Coffee & tea are available in the lobby 24/7.
Special Diets: The camp offers these special diets: vegan, vegetarian, diabetic, gluten-free, dairy free, no pork, and peanut allergy. To request a special diet, you must fill out the ‘Special Diet’ section(s) on the SEYM registration form.
Campsite Pavilion: Campers & Friends may prepare their own meals in this covered, screened room provided with picnic tables, stove, refrigerator and ample electrical outlets. Bring your own cooking and eating utensils. You may also choose to pre-register for any or all of your meals in the Dining Hall.
Food Off Campus: There are abundant restaurants 3-5 miles from the camp.
Scholarships & Financial Assistance
We hope that all who would like to attend the SEYM Gathering will have that opportunity!
Thanks to generous donors, SEYM has funds to enable you to attend.
- Go ahead and register online. Be sure to check the box ‘I am applying for a scholarship.’
- Email Susan Wade, Registrar to make arrangements.
If you have any questions, please contact Susan Wade, Registrar: 727-821-5048, Susan Wade, Registrar.
Florida United Methodist Life Enrichment Center
4991 Picciola Road,
Fruitland Park, FL 34751
Fruitland Park is located on US Hwy. 441 between Leesburg and Lady Lake, Florida. From Hwy.27/US 441, turn east on County Road 466A, Picciola Road. Go 3 miles. The Life Enrichment Center is on the right; look for the sign. Enter the drive and proceed to the designated parking area.
When You Arrive
Check-in at the SEYM Registration Desk in the Auditorium lobby to get room key & name badges.
Check-in times: Phone number is posted if Registrar has stepped out.
Late arrivals: PLEASE have a friend get your room key and wait up for you.
Things to Bring
- Masks (and COVID test kits, if you can)
- Toys for toddlers, children’s supplies (throw pillows, toys to share, soccer balls, etc.), puzzles and games for all ages.
- Instruments and musicians needed for Jammin’ Under the Trees.
- Books for Book Swap table in auditorium lobby.
- Your books-to-buy list for The FGC Bookstore.
- Walking shoes for nature walks: check out the Path of Silence.
- A friend/Friend new to your Meeting. Let them see how wonderful it is attend Southeastern Yearly Meeting’s Annual Sessions and Gathering!
- Documents-In-Advance (DIAs) for Annual Sessions. See Business Page>
Table displays are another great way for Friends to connect at the Gathering. Display space is available for Quaker organizations, SEYM committees, and non-profit organizations SEYM Friends work with.
Display spaces must be reserved with the SEYM Secretary, Susan Wade: firstname.lastname@example.org, 407-739-4150.