Ask an Amishman
Okay, we’re going to roll this one out on a trial basis. But who knows, could be interesting.
I frequently get Amish-related questions in my email inbox. I do my best to answer but sometimes come up short.
So: if you have an Amish-related question you’d like answered, and would prefer a response from an actual Amish person rather than hearing me yap on about it, send it on in. You’ll find the email link in the upper left-hand corner of the blog or under the ‘about’ link.
No guarantees on getting an answer, but the best ones I’ll pass along to ‘Mr. X’, our Lancaster County Amish correspondent, and if he can work it into his very busy schedule (these days he’s working harder than a one-legged man in a butt-kicking contest), we’ll try to get responses straight from the Amishman’s mouth right here on the blog.
To kick it off, here’s one that came in the other day:
Do you know whether the Amish read or have any views on the Amish novels by Beverly Lewis or Wanda Brunstetter? I asked a teen girl last trip and I don’t think she was familiar with them, yet they are sold throughout the area at shops where Amish work. Those authors have probably done more to expose the general population to the Amish lifestyle than anything I can think of.
And the response:
“There is a small percentage of Amish readers that read the Beverly and Wanda books, mostly young females. For the most part they are taken for exactly what they are–storybook novels. Therefore most Amish people really don’t have anytime to read them, let alone ponder their meaning. More popular with the Old Order Amish and Mennonites are the Carrie Bender books, which is a pseudonym for a daughter of an O.O. Mennonite bishop. Also the Buggy Spoke series, written by an Amish woman named Byler from Central Pa. I personally have not read any of these books but have sisters and nieces that do.”
I have to admit that I have little experience with Amish-themed fiction. Marta Perry was kind enough to send me a couple of her Amish romance-suspense novels last fall, even despite the fact that as a 30-year old single male, I’m probably not the ideal demographic for the genre.
With all the research and writing work that has been going into my own two books, I have not had a chance to finish them, but I did find the few chapters I read entertaining.
Interest in Amish-themed fiction seems to be booming (like interest in most things Amish these days). Besides the perennially popular Wanda and Beverly, other authors have made the scene as the subcategory has grown. Beth Wiseman, for example, has sold 40,000 copies of her debut novel Plain Perfect since last September.
Whoops, this was supposed to be ‘Ask an Amishman’, and looks like I’m yapping again. Anyway, thanks to our inquisitive reader and to our AAP (Anonymous Amish Person), and hope we’ll be getting some interesting questions. If you can get them past me I’m pretty confident this is no holds barred, so feel free to get into cultural, spiritual, pop, or whatever topics you’re curious about.
Ah yes, it’s not required, but have a glance here if you want to avoid asking something that’s already been covered, or maybe to inspire an idea.
“Ask an Amishman” column is great. Keep up the good work !
Can you become Amish
Do you have to be born into the Amish to become Amish?
Do they accept you if were not raised Amish?
Another question as an offshoot of this one: How is reading books, specifically fiction, not the same as “letting the sin of the world in” through television, internet, etc.? In other words, the portal is opened through books as well as other means for prideful thinking, and other things not congruent with Amish thought.
what a great question. Ethically there is really no difference what portal the “sin of the world” comes in . The principle of garbage in garbage out is still true whatever the medium. However the electronic media is more mordern hence more uncomfortable. I see the assumption in your question that books would be considered right and electronic media wrong. that is not really true even though the amish do make choices not to become too entangled in electronic media and to not have elctronic media in our homes. Yet it might even be fair to say the percentage of amish using cell phones, computers at work,or thru an accountant or secretary or youth watching TV when away from home is probably greater than the percentage reading novels although it is not considered right. The key is to eat the meat but spit out the bones. Also great importance is placed on not being challenging or offensive to the others in the community i.e. using whatever, in quiet ways rather than bold assertive ways.
I know that the Amish go by a set of rules called the “Ordnung” set out by the Church community – – can someone explain to me why these “rules” differ from group to group – – and why these rules seem never to be written out and who makes them and the procedure in general – – also is the whole church community bound by these rules, if not, how do they get around them? – – Thanks, Jack
The ordnung is more a set of collective understandings of expected behavior, rather than a set of rules. Why they differ from group to group is because each congregation has a degree of autonomy and also because ordnung develops informally and as much or more,from the lay members up, as from the ministry down. In fact there is hardly any hierarchial structure at all. All this can only work if you do as Paul says , holding each other in higher esteem than self. As to how do the amish get around the ordnung, ideally everybody is obedient and accepting of the expectations of ordnung, however reality keeps intruding, so the short answer is very carefully and respectfully,in other words not in bold and assertive ways.
also jack they are usually not written so they do not become scripture, is what my take is on that.
The Beverly Lewis books are definitely verboten in the central Pennsylvania Amish community that surrounds me. The upshot of each series is that the female protagonist leaves the Amish faith to become a Mennonite because salvation is not guaranteed in the OOA church. There are also details that are not accurate.
The Carrie Bender books are gaining a foothold, especially among teen girls. Dora’s Diary is an example of a series written by Carrie Bender that is appropriate for Amish girls 13+. They are quite accurate to everyday life, and they do a good job of reinforcing a girl’s perception of her role in the family and church community.
Linda Byler’s Buggy Spoke series, which follows an Amish girl from childhood through marriage in six books, is hugely popular among girls starting about age 10.
Most of my adult women Amish friends are fans of historical fiction, such as that of Janette Oke or Lauraine Snelling. These books are not about the Anabaptist world, but the heroines are devout Christians.
The husbands, brothers, and fathers of my friends read less fiction than the women do. They read a lot of magazines and periodicals, though, such as farm journals, horse journals, and other farm-life related publications. When they do read fiction, it tends to be Westerns. However, I know one Amish dad who had a snowy off-Sunday two weeks ago and sat down to read two of his daughters’ Carrie Bender books. (smile)
great post kate I am curious the central Pa community you refer to is it Mifflin CO. or a sister settlement of Lancaster. In Lancaster the parents are more likely to do the verboting than the ministers as far as beverly and Wanda are concerned . My own fiction tastes are not Westerns ,I find them extremely boring. My tastes are James
Michener or James Herriot
Mr. X, I live in the Upper Valleys area, so it’s a sister settlement to Lancaster County. I’m sure you’re correct about who is advising about the books. Thank you, also, for sharing your favorite authors. I have read some of both authors.
Now, here is my question for “Ask an Amishman.” Here in the Upper Valleys, there seem to be quite a number of youth groups. Do the youth groups differ from one another in more than name, such as some are more traditional and some are more daring? So the Chickadees would sing more old hymns and slow tunes than the Cougars, who sing more gospel hymns? Or do young people gravitate to a group based on its nearness to their homes? How would a young person choose a group?
Fascinating post, and of particular interest to me since it was a research topic close to my heart and you may know my findings were academically published. Mr. X and your other readers may (or may not) be surprised to hear that the Amish in various communities read widely, and their reading habits are really not that different from readers in any rural town. Christian fiction, mystery novels, suspense, and even westerns are of great interest to adults. The Amish also enjoy a lot of non-fiction; History, world events, cooking, hunting, crafts, etc. Admittedly, Amish readers in Holmes, LaGrange, and Lancaster tend to be more adventurous in their choices. The Amish also read a lot of books that are published by their own publishing groups and circulate amongst themselves. In the end, they do read Beverly Lewis, and so much more!
Great topic, I enjoy your blog, by the way. Keep up the good work.
kate I tried to give you a sensible reply to your post but i am having tech difficulty since my fingers are my comfortable curled around a pitchfork than dancing on a keyboard . i will try later
Kate< In Lancaster there must be at least 30 or more youth groups, so many that I certainly can't keep after. I have now been married 17 years, so i didn't worry about what is happening on the "rumspringa" scene, but now The first of our six sons has turned 16 and began "rumspringa". He made his choice based on his personal preference, and what his friend in the neighborhood did. sometimes the choices of siblings, cousins and the preferences of the parents have a bearing on the decision of which group. My son joined a crowd known as the eagles. which are a parent supervised crowd. this is an innovation that came about since i have been married and is a significant social change. I am for the most part in favor of this since it provides a more wholesome and cleaner youth exp. than in my day. although we had tons of fun and many good memories and very few lingering regrets.
monica I think i remember the presentation you made on the subject at E Town Young Center a couple years back. It was quite interesting. I was one of the maybe dozen or so amish people at that conference. My 6 sons really love our county bookmobile. Reading habits do widely vary from family to family as my wife’s hardly reads anything but farm magazines the botschaft and the bible. My family on the other hand is always reading anything they have time to read.
Mr. X –
Thank you for taking the time to answer questions from curious minds! As a Kindergarten Teacher in the “Sunshine State”, I have a few questions; The “power of play” is extremely important in child development, What kinds of toys and games do Amish children play with? How or Is creativity encouraged? By the way, I live about a hour away from Pinecraft and visit often. Thanks again!!!
I have a question for Mr. X or possibly Michelle V. could answer. I’m curious about Pinecraft. Is it a “retirement” community or a vacation spot ? Do the Amish live there year ’round or are they “snowbirds” like others in Florida ? Do they own or rent their accommodations? Do families with young children live there or is it mainly older adults? How do they spend the day? Without land to farm what keeps the men busy? I would think the women would still be busy with laundry, preparing meals and household chores or do they have time for fun, fellowship and relaxation? Thank you for your time and sharing your information.
michelle and allison today i am a little short of time and computer access but next week i will take the time to respond.
Allison H. –
Pinecraft is located in the city limits of Sarasota. I would say it is a retirement community. Most live there year round. They ride 3 wheel trikes and I’ve seen young children on rollerblades. They have a softball field, play volleyball, and shuffleboard.The community is literally located on a city block grid. There is 2 main streets with 2 restaurants “Yoder’s” and “Troyer’s” where Amish and Mennonites “hangout”. There’s a “new” Farmer’s Market at Yoder’s and from time to time they have quilt and craft sales. Miller’s furn. shop, health food stores, icecream shop are also there. I have seen some Amish children and teens on the beach and at the Downtown Sarasota Farmer’s Market. The only time I’ve ever spoken to any plain folks is when buying something. I am respectful of their privacy. I frist learned about the Amish when I was an 18 year old babysitter and little David drew a picture of an Amish man he saw on a recent trip. After his parents came home, I went to the library and checked out all the books they had. I’ve been hooked ever since! I’m in my late 30’s 😉 Hope this helps some.
Michelle V. Thanks so much for the info about Pinecraft – it sounds like a nice area. I was especially interested to hear that they ride the 3 wheel trikes there. I have one that I bought while visiting an Amish settlement in Illinois. The Amish storekeeper told me they were popular with the Amish women going to market to pick up a few things as the basket in back will hold several bags of groceries. I’m in my mid 40’s and found that my balance wasn’t what it used to be on a 2 wheel bike and that the 3 wheel gives me better stability. My husband and kids tease me for riding a “tricycle” but they don’t complain when I put our picnic lunch in the big basket in back when we go for a ride 🙂 It isn’t quite biking weather yet in the midwest but spring isn’t too far away ! I too enjoy learning about the Amish and I think this is a great website. Thanks again. Allison H.
Dear Mr. X-
I was wondering if you knew anything about the influence of The Amish Culture on Philadelphia food. There is very little information on it. And if you have any books on the subject, I would love to read them.
about pinecraft , i have never been there but know some amish that have or go on a regular wintertime basis. Mostly it is semi retired or retired folk that go. although some youth go and some newlyweds go as a sort of a quasi honeymoon. The joke among those of us who don’t have the inclination or the means to go joke that pinecraft is a place for the newlyweds , the nearly deads , and the punkheads. as to the question as to wether the amish rent or buy homes in pinecraft the answer is both with renting probably the more common. And what keeps the men busy. Well they are there to rest and relaxse, however i think the women use the chance to get even and make the men do more housework than normal, or at least i sure would. Don Kraybill in his excellent book called The Amish of Lancaster County has a neat section on Pinecraft. I recommend it highly . it is geared toward a popular as opposed to scholarly audience so it is an entertaining as as well as an informative read.
We have a family of 6 boys ranging from age 16 to 3. And believe me they are very creative. there is never a dull moment at our house. My theory has been to let them develop at their own pace. to be there and answer their questions and show them how as they ask. I am reminded of a remark I once heard . that it is no wonder kids are confused . the first 3 years of their lives they are begged encouraged and cajoled to walk and to talk. and then once they master that they are told to shut up and sit down. We try not to give them sensory overload. But with 6 boys in one house maybe it is Mom and Dad that have sensory overload sometimes. Creativity is certainly encouraged. But so is discipline meaning teaching perseverance for one, and also teaching them the difference between yes and no. As to what toys , trikes wagons books dolls Farm animals and equipment games chutes and ladders candy land uno old maid etc. etc. And you know watching the boys sometimes it seems the more simple the toy is the greater their imagination is. They are more fascinated with empty boxes and sticks and baler twine then something with a lot of bells and whistles . I also am fascinated by how 6 boys with the same father and mother and the same genes can be so different from each other. We have the Type A doer . The gregarious, The precise , The imaginative the ham , the sensitive , and the astute ones. And also their mother is a saint
Mr. X –
Well said and Here,Here!!! The games you mentioned were(and still are;) my alltime favorite and i have them in my classroom. Along, with puzzles,dominos, and BINGO(the kind that teaches words,letters and such) I just want to say… THANK YOU for the detailed response and I’m sure your wife is a saint and then some. Take Care,
OK I have to say a few things on top of my soapbox … Mr. X’s response about his and the Amish children made me realize as I had to procter the infamous FCAT (state of FL.’s standardized test for kids in grades 3rd-11th) that English children are experiencing a “disappearing Childhood” and I want to pose a question to all and any, “How do we bring back the “enchantment” of a nostalgic childhood among a “techno.” (not the music 🙂 type of upbringing.
” a soapy” Michelle V.
Michelle – I’ll join you on your soapbox….as a mother of 2 children I have always been so irritated at the amount of homework that is given to the kids. They have sat in school for approximately 7 hours and then they are expected to go home and sit some more to do more work ? That’s crazy ! They need fresh air, sunshine and exercise – kids need to be kids. Also – there needs to be time in each day to be together as a family. We make that a priority in our house – but I think most people are over scheduled and don’t have quality family time. I don’t know how it is in your state and at your school but in Missouri teachers “teach to the test.” The administration is obsessed about the standardized test results so they make the tests the priority because they are so concerned about government funding. I think our priorities are out of line. I’m with Mr. X.
simple toys and using your imagination is the way to go.
The book question is an interesting one to me, as I am a librarian who serves the Amish-populated area of Ohio. Not many OO Amish or more conservative Amish use the library, with some exceptions in certain areas (they do come in to use the the internet to order things online for their stores, or equipment), and Mennonites use the library like crazy, since they homeschool. Our collection is based on what the most-read items are in the area. Carrie Bender books are by far the most popular. Buggy Spoke is popular, but Bender more. Brunstetter and Lewis are read here by Amish teen girls “undercover” from their parents – the Amish here overall consider reading novels a waste of time – thinking they should be engaged in more productive activities (work) or family togetherness, although I see that relaxing a bit and definitely notice more “idle” time than when I was younger. For the non-Amish here, who live and work side by side with the Amish, any Amish inspirational fiction is HUGE. It is the highest selling genre and by far the most checked out where I work, and bookstores and libraries can’t keep up. One thing I’ve noticed about the inspirational fiction about the Amish – it is often inaccurate! I really enjoy Amish themed books, since I grew up here, but sometimes it’s hard for me to read them since I notice errors that many others would never know about not living among them so closely and it bugs me as I keep reading! Anyway, it’s an interesting question and one I have to consider every day in my job.
Lisa (and anyone):
As the poster of the original novel question, I am curious about any ‘inaccuracies’ you would care to point out. Having read nearly all the Beverly & Wanda books (strange for a guy, I admit!), I have certainly been skeptical about many things. Thanks in advance.
I have a new topic for Mr. X regarding holidays. Our local Amish-run stores are closed New Years Day, Good Friday, Easter Monday, Ascension Day, Memorial Day, Pentecost Monday, Labor Day, Thanksgiving, Christmas, Boxing Day, and this year Oct. 10. I noticed it is the day before Fall communion for “A” churches. I also notice that there is no holiday the day before spring communion. Can you clarify this, please?
what is boxing day? Memorial and Labor Day some will be closed, some not, depends some on the clientle, example would be a retail establishment that serves mostly non amish. Oct 10 is usually held oct 11 and is a day of fasting and prayer, in preperation for communion. but oct 11 falls on a sunday this year,so it is observed the day before. Good Friday serves the same function in the spring
There is also a 2nd christmas day dec 26. another note is that easter mon pentecost mon and 2nd christmas are unique to the lancaster settlements. In the midwest oh in they are not observed.
I read a few of the Beverly Lewis and Wanda Brunstetter books just to see what all the fuss is about. I grew up Amish and though I chose to leave I find these books very inaccurate. It bugs me more than just a little bit. There should be a law against writing about things you know NOTHING about.
Rick, to be honest I’d have to go back and look at the books again. They are just inaccuracies that annoy me as I’m reading them and I don’t really file them away permanently. lol. (Sometimes they are really dumb things, like the last book I read the author kept saying that the character was in a buggy (or cart, actually)looking “under her lashes” at the driver to the LEFT – but the drivers are always on the right, or kind of the center if alone. That’s just a silly thing but something someone very familiar with the Amish would know and makes me know they aren’t really familiar.) Other times it’s more the lifestyle or the appearance descriptions, or sometimes religious things, which show me that someone just didn’t research well or become familiar. Maybe when I have a chance I’ll go back and see if I can recall specific items. Sorry I can’t remember details, it’s just always the overall impression for someone who lives in the middle of the Amish, sometimes enough to make me not want to finish the book. As a side note, the other thing that drives me crazy is the covers of the books! I know they are meant to sell to the English audience and so on, but no Amish woman where I live would have lovely curling strands of hair hanging out of her covering and eye makeup on! lol. By the way, my husband often reads my “Amish fiction”, (if it’s not overly romantic, lol), so you are not alone!
I have a friend who said she wants to go Amish. She has been living without tv, computer, and rarely ever turns on her lights, stove, she has been preparing her baths in cold water, etc for over 6 months now and she is also trying to learn the language through some kind of Pennsylvania Dutch dictionary. She has been to Lancaster County 3 times and the only thing she is really concerned about is if she is able to join the Amish even though she has tattoos.
I was wondering if there is a way to write an Amish family in order to learn more about thier beliefs, and way of everyday life? I’m truely curious about it. I feel like I’m lost in a sea of garbage with the churches and christians around me. One propblem is that I live in a small town in Texas. 🙁 It is very hard to learn about God, when the ones who are supposed to teach it play guitar hero. (no offense to those who play.)
Hi… i live in ArKansas an was wondering if AN AMISHMAN could pray for an ME and also contact me in some form to allow me help with my situatiion i was hoping to travel to missouri soon to an AMISH community hoprfully to live on tha farm but o will really like to talk with someone who is ACTUALLY AMISH!!! PLEASE REPLY
Is there an Amish farm that is willing to give boys wortk for the summer holiday? I have a son that understand Dutch and want to work on a Amish farm for the summer.
I was wondering, since Amish is both a religion and a way of life could someone move outside of the community and still be considered Amish? We were debating this in my University Religion studies class the other day. The situation we were given is a young girl decides on her own that she wants to adopt the Amish way of life, but is younger than 18 and is unable to move into an Amish community. On her own she decides to follow the way of life to the best of her abilities while still living under her parents house. We have been debating this scenario for a few days now.
I have loved all of your responses so far, so informative! Do any of the Amish you know accept Englishers as penpals? I would love to converse about gardening hints, recipes, weather, etc. Is this possible? Also, as an aside, I subscribe to the Budget and find so much enjoyment every week reading what the scribes have written.
Some fiction Amish novels I’ve read mention that the Amish are not allowed to read the Bible on their own time; that they only hear Biblical excerpts at Preaching service, and in high German. Is this true? And do the Old Order Amish have their own version of the Bible, as opposed to the Christian King James version? Thanks for any input.
Patty, some Amish I know do exchange letters with pen pals, so if it is something you’d like to do, it is possible (though not necessarily easy). Seeing that you already subscribe to the Budget, one good first step may be to take out an ad in that newspaper expressing interest in an Amish penpal, with some basic background information about yourself of course.
Do Amish ever live alone, away from other Amish?
Hi, I thought I’d jump in and try to answer a few of your questions since our AAP (Anonymous Amish Person) is not available at the moment.
Nicole, that is a good question. Someone could still remain Amish and technically remain a baptized member of the community if they moved away(having been baptized already), but living outside the context of church and community, one would begin to lose the idea of being “Amish” in a meaningful sense. There have been occasions in the past where Amish have moved as an individual family (or two or three) to a new area, but were either usually joined by others, including a minister (or had a minister ordained by a bishop from another community). If that doesn’t happen, the community will fail given enough time. Having a member of the minstry, and ideally at least a handful of families, is seen as key to maintaining an Amish community, and lacking that over time, Amish who have moved away have either moved again to other, more populous settlements, or have assimilated/joined a different church.
In the situation you describe, the person would need to be baptized and join a community to be considered “Amish”, otherwise it would be something else. Hope that helps!
Are Amish allowed to read the Bible?
Hi Linda, thanks for your question too, you know this is something that I often hear out there, and I’ve never really seen any evidence of Amish people not being allowed to read the Bible, and it usually strikes me as a bit hard to fathom. This may come from the idea that the Bible is seen as literal Truth by Amish, and that a lot of questioning and picking apart is not something that would be promoted (in opposition to other faith branches where that may be more common, or where there may be a metaphorical rather than literalist reading). But Bibles are ever-present in Amish homes; when I visit Amish friends, and while living with them for two months, a daily morning reading after breakfast was and is the norm. I’ve often discussed Bible stories, people, and ideas with Amish people, outside of church. There is diversity among Amish, but I simply have never seen any evidence for reading the Bible outside of church being frowned upon. The only thing I can come up with is that of a possible fear of overanalysis of what should be taken as fact and truth, and which some may fear would lead one to questioning and leading away from the Amish path chosen at baptism. So again, there is much diversity among Amish, so I can only speculate that you might see more of this current in some churches, which is perhaps where the idea that Amish are not allowed to read the Bible comes from (perhaps Mr. X can be lured back on here to lend his knowledge on the topic (!)
As for the language, the version the friend I was speaking of uses is a split Bible with half English, half High German. These are common in Amish homes. Amish children read (and are read to by parents) Bible stories in English (I actually had the privilege of selling these in many Amish communities, which is how I met so many Amish people). The King James version is by far the most common English version used; some Amish use the New International Version (NIV).
Do Amish males and females sit at the same table for gatherings or special events?
Has there ever been a meeting among your fellow amishmen about updating your buggies to make them more safe for your larger families and to make them more safe with lights?This is merey for your protection and no kind of vanity,and saves lives too.so many motorists don’t respect and dont have time to react to the buggies in time if they don’t see any light.just an enlisher(descendant of german)
another question:i was reading the questions up ahead of mine,noticing talk of the three wheel bicycle.My husband has one.The sproket slips.do you Amishmen repair these?or keep parts for them that we can buy and if so ,how do we get the address to that?I know longer have my old budget paper.
Is there a way someone could live with an amish family in Pennsylvania for a week to experience their lifestyle?
Is it some kind of freedom to in an amsih community? How can a community like this work? And what does not work? Do they have prejudices about us? What do You think would happen if everybody in the world were like amish? It was a lot of questions i hope some of You could answer just a few of them, thanks!
Hi, can you help me ? I would like to know if the young amish choose to reporting out of the amish community, may they then see their families? and what if they choose to stay, can they then reporting out? I hope you can help me.
How come I never see Amish men riding bare back?
On the topic of Amish fiction novels which seem to be so popular nowadays:
@Rick: The worst inacuracy we have found so far was in one of Wanda’s books. At one point, she had the characters in the book worrying about hitting a deer with their buggy because apparently someone had the week before on the stretch of road they were on. LOL. Alright, there is no way a buggy is going to hit a deer. Never in my life have I heard of that happening, and I’ve lived here in Holmes/Wayne all of it. For one, a buggy goes wayyy to slow to even get near to hitting one unless you are galloping (which, even then, how fast can you even go?), and secondly, what deer or any animal for that matter would jump out in front of another animal? (Lol, maybe a rabid deer?) Also, if a deer would run across the road in front of a buggy, it would definitely get across or get out of the way before it would ever be a huge major problem. 😛
Lisa, I totally agree on the cover of the books. It is annoying how obvious it is that they are wearing makeup or perfectly plucked brows or… etc, not to mention they don’t usually even have the facial structure to BE amish. I know, that sounds weird – but its true. There is a certain structure common around here because of the dutch/german/mennonite/amish background.
Finally – I don’t like reading them because the author’s always seem to paint a very idealic or “perfect” picture of what its like to be Amish. They don’t go very deep and it feels like they are always coming up with a plot that they think would probably happen if they were Amish, and they totally miss the fact that the Amish are actually human and actually deal with a lot of things which are common to the whole of the human race. Their lives are not just peaceful, simple, and easy. Its hard work. And there is hardship and pain. They don’t, somehow, only have problems which are “Amish only” because they don’t use electricity, or have cars, or have to live a certain way. There are things which everyone on earth could empathize with because everyone has, at one point or another, experianced rejection or loss. I don’t want to come across that somehow I dislike the Amish or how they do life or anything like that. There is also joy, happiness, peace, and good things. I am just saying – it is not a perfect way of life and it isn’t easy.
Also, to the question someone posted above about people not being able to read the Bible – I recently came across a page on facebook for a ministry called “MAP” or “Mission to Amish People”. http://www.mapministry.org/ < There is a link to their website. They had a video on fb of interviews with ex-Amish people telling their stories. It was very interesting, and it may answer some of the questions anyone has. 🙂