17 responses to Two Former Amish Women Share Their Stories
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    Debbie H
    Comment on Leaving Amish (June 27th, 2017 at 14:40)

    Leaving Amish

    As in all faiths some though raised in the faith feel discontent and leave but at least they have the strong morals taught when they were young. I think these young women left for the right reasons and will go far. I am grateful Hawthorne is welcoming to the Amish who want to further their education. I think these two will do well in their new life.

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    Al in Ky
    Comment on Two Former Amish Women Share Their Stories (June 28th, 2017 at 06:56)

    This was very interesting to me since I was born in Rochester, Minn., and grew up on a farm not too far from the Harmony/Canton settlement where Rebecca and her husband are from. And like Erik, I am surprised that Rebecca and her husband were not shunned. I would like to know more about that. It is so unlike the Swartzentruber Amish I know.

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    Mark — Holmes Co.
    Comment on Two Former Amish Women Share Their Stories (June 28th, 2017 at 07:43)

    I’m wondering if there was a church split? If a member of the Swartzentrubers leaves the church during a church split, there is not usually any kind of action, so a couple could leave the Amish altogether and face no action. I’m not saying that’s what definitely happened here, but it’s a strong possibility.

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      Interesting Mark, that rings a bell, now that you mention it I believe Karen Johnson-Weiner may touch on that “policy” in New York Amish. On last look Harmony has something like 6 or 7 church districts so maybe that was the case. It would have happened around 2002 in this instance.

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        Mark — Holmes Co.
        Comment on Two Former Amish Women Share Their Stories (June 28th, 2017 at 08:06)

        Erik, 2002 would have been about right for a fairly major division. Somehow I missed the fact they left about that time.

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      Eli S Olmstead Co. MN.
      Comment on Two Former Amish Women Share Their Stories (June 28th, 2017 at 22:29)

      Mark, you are exactly right.That was the case in this instance.

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        Mark — Holmes Co.
        Comment on Two Former Amish Women Share Their Stories (June 29th, 2017 at 08:28)

        Good to know, Eli.

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        Al in Ky
        Comment on Two Former Amish Women Share Their Stories (June 29th, 2017 at 14:50)

        Thanks for your comment, Eli. I have visited the Fillmore County (Harmony, Canton, etc.)Amish community many times in the past 20 years, but didn’t know enough particulars about it to know there had been a church split amongst the Swartzentruber Amish.

        But, I had wondered about it for a long time. In 2001, I got a book entitled Anabaptist World USA by Donald Kraybill and C. Nelson Hostetter which lists every Amish church district (as well as Mennonite and Brethren Churches) in the USA at that time (2001). In the Minnesota Amish Old Order Amish church listing, it listed as a district “Northwest at Preston.” Then in the Swartzentruber Amish church listing, there were four districts listed in the Harmony/Canton area. I always wondered about that Old Order Amish District at Preston. Could this be the one you are referring to that resulted from the Swartz. church split? If not, do you know if there was (and still is) an Old Order Amish (non-Swartz.) district in the Preston area?

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    Comment on Two Former Amish Women Share Their Stories (June 29th, 2017 at 00:23)

    Amish and Chicago Amtrak.

    This article describes Union Station as an Amish hub. I haven’t ever been to Union Station in Chicago, but I have take buses out of Chicago and it’s the same. Amish seems to use buses a lot, and on my trips on buses it was always very conservative looking Amish people on them. I would see Amish get on and off buses in the middle of nowhere and wondered what they’re doing there. My assumption is they were visiting family or looking for new farmland to buy.

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    Al in Ky
    Comment on Two Former Amish Women Share Their Stories (June 29th, 2017 at 15:02)

    I thought your comments were interesting, AJ. I have traveled many times on Amtrak from Indianapolis to St. Paul, Minn., changing trains in Chicago, with a four-hour layover. During my layovers at Union Station, I have observed many Amish getting on trains, off trains, waiting during layovers at the station, etc. There usually are quite a number of Amish. I am pretty familiar with different styles of Amish dress (differences in Amish communities in women’s head coverings, men’s hat styles, etc.) and have observed many different styles of dress amongst the Amish there at Union Station. So they are traveling on Amtrak from many different communities — Lancaster, Pa., Elkhart-Lagrange, Ind., Fillmore County, Minn., Ashland, Montana, etc.

    I have had many interesting conversations with Amish people traveling on Amtrak. Some are going to visit relatives, some are going to funerals, some to weddings, some on trips for their small businesses, some just for pleasure (like to the Grand Canyon), some to search out new land, etc. Many different reasons.

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    Comment on Two Former Amish Women Share Their Stories (June 29th, 2017 at 16:00)

    I wonder how many women leave the lifestyle due to inequity of the work load. To work in the fields AND put supper on the table AND keep up the house would definitely turn off anyone. There is no nobility in a household where men don’t pull their own weight. I would think women would leave more than men – it’s tough out in the English world for women as it is – but not as tough as it was for Rebecca slaving away while the men didn’t help with the house chores. But – it seems similar in some ways for the “English” wives as well. Women in the “English” world who work outside the home still do 84% of the in-home chores – but their work load isn’t the strenuous work like the farmers in their fields.

    Also – I always am sad when I hear of an Amish youth who runs away and has no support system once they leave. Sarah’s story made me feel for her – to have no one meet you and help you when you do leave is scary.

    I’m happy though that they found their way and God was watching over them. Sarah and Rebecca are very brave and strong women! I will pray for them and their future. May they achieve their goals, be happy and healthy.

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    Eli S Olmstead Co. MN.
    Comment on Two Former Amish Women Share Their Stories (July 1st, 2017 at 06:39)

    AL the four districts you speak of are the ones that split.Which would be the Harmony/Canton area.There is also a fifth district of Old Order Amish in the Harmony/Canton area.they are very close to the same just a little more strict in some areas.As far as the four districts I believe they split two ways maybe even three.the Northwest Preston I’m thinking is the fifth district.Why they would call it the Northwest I’m not sure because they are more in the Harmony/Canton area.Unless they are referring to district that I call the Granger Amish. Granger Amish are Old Order but not Swartz. they are the same as the Hazelton,IA community.The Granger Amish are in the Ganger,IA area right on the MN. border SW of Harmony.

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    Al in Ky
    Comment on Two Former Amish Women Share Their Stories (July 1st, 2017 at 09:49)

    Thanks very much for your reply, Eli. It helped me understand the area better. I’m familiar with the Granger Amish and have been to that community several times as well as the Canton/Harmony area. I think the Granger Amish may be in fellowship with the Riceville/McIntire,Iowa, Amish also. I know they do visiting back and forth.

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    Aodh Mor MacRaynall
    Comment on I don't know (July 2nd, 2017 at 13:28)

    I don't know

    Sounds like we got a coupla Lifetime movies in th makin here.

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    Comment on Two Former Amish Women Share Their Stories (July 31st, 2017 at 17:19)

    Two Former Amish Women Share Their Stories

    I find these articles very interesting! I always loved going to Amish Country when we lived in Ohio, to the Berlin area! It is the most beautiful country side and just feels so quaint! I love to read the Amish stories even though I know they’re fiction & probably exaggerated quite a bit but I still like learning more about them! The ones I have met have always been very nice people! Would love to sit down & talk to more of them! These two women are very brave to leave & to further their education, it would be hard to live a life like the Amish do & to keep all of their rules etc. It seems as though there are bad in every race & religious cultures no matter where your from!

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    Comment on Help!!! (July 21st, 2018 at 22:25)



    I have very unusual question. I know you will probably
    Laugh at me. I am not Amish, but I recently met a beautiful Amish woman, and what can I say. I am totally
    In love with her. I cannot stop thinking about her.

    My question is: do I tell her? Do I go around with this
    Burden the rest of my life. What do I do??

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      Derek, I would say, there are a lot of fish in the sea 🙂 If she’s baptized Amish, then it’s relevant to know that Amish only marry other baptized Amish (and thinking about joining the Amish because of romantic interest…it’s really not a good idea, as others have discovered). I don’t know how much more I can advise here, if you just met then it sounds more like you are likely more infatuated than “in love”, that can be a powerful feeling of course but it is something that comes and goes. Maybe keep your eyes open for other women who exhibit similar qualities (I assume that it’s more than physical beauty that is making you feel attracted). I wish you the best.

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