This video is one of the more unusual ones I’ve seen when it comes to Amish singing. This group, described as “Amish youth”, are singing in an “English” church. It’s also clearly a mixed group of Amish from different communities.
A commenter states that “this is a diversified group of Amish. Some Old Order PA Amish and regular Old Order Amish.” I’m not sure what is meant by “regular” in this case, but it might be that he means Midwestern Amish. And you can see both the characteristic heart-shaped prayer covering as well as the straight-pleated covering on the girls’/women’s heads here.
So why are the Amish in this church? And why do we see Amish from different places? Well there is one clue in that this was posted by Emmanuel Baptist Church of Macon, Mississippi. There is one Amish community in Mississippi, but it’s a plain Swartzentruber one, and that doesn’t fit this picture.
So what brought different Amish to this corner of Mississippi, to sing in a Baptist churchhouse? My best guess is that they may have been down in this area from Pennsylvania and Midwestern states doing disaster relief of some sort. Amish young people (and some older ones) volunteer their time and efforts to help clean up and rebuild after hurricanes and tornadoes. And I imagine they were invited as a group to sing by grateful members of the local community.
I may be completely wrong on that, but I’ll go with that theory until I hear differently 🙂 Anyway, as usual some nice singing here. Midway through, a young Amish lady says that “I forgot to give you a warning we were going to sing a German song,” to laughter, referring to the hymn they just finished. They then start into an English-language hymn.
Update: Here’s a second video from a different singing at the church. Larry Miller notes in the comments that “Emmanuel Baptist Church is a partner with Mennonite Service Center in Noxubee County, MS. Twice yearly 50+ Old Order Amish young adults from PA, MI, IN, KY volunteer to repair, build ramps and roof houses for the elderly, disabled & poor.” This has apparently been going on for eight years now.
Hat tip to commenter Central Virginian for sharing this second video. In it, church leaders introduce Ivan from the group with a little joke about his hard-to-pronounce last name. Ivan then explains that this particular group is from Michigan, Indiana, and Pennsylvania and that “we’re here to try to further the Kingdom of God” before the full group joins and they begin singing. I like this clip even a bit better than the first.