Fascinating Fact Friday – The Amish in Community

Happy Friday, AmishReaders! We have another “Fascinating Fact” for you today, compliments of Mindy Starns Clark and The Pocket Guide to Amish Life.

The Amish in Community

The community is the cornerstone of Amish life. It is where they most often find their identity, support, lifestyle, worship, classmates, spouses, and friends. It is a source of strength, an insurance policy when disaster strikes, and a safe haven in an often hostile (or at least intrusively curious) world.

To the outsider, this strong sense of community is one of the most appealing aspects of Amish life. Who wouldn’t want the safety net of a loving group of friends and relatives to surround them during bad times, celebrate together in good times, and bear the ups and downs of life together? The very thought sounds like music to our culturally isolated ears. But then we consider the downside of Amish community: the myriad of rules that seem to constrict at every turn, the sacrificing of individuality for the greater good, the practices of excommunication and shunning that seem harsh and cruel. Would it be worth it? Could the benefits exist without the drawbacks?

These elements of the Amish mindset will help us understand the Amish view of community:

• Everyone in the community is accountable to God.
• The virtue of humility is shown through respect for God and others.
• All persons are worthy of dignity and respect.
• Communities are made stronger when individuals do not use personal desire as their supreme criteria for making decisions.
• Traditions are more important than progress.
• Accumulated wisdom is better than an individual’s ideas.
• Authority in all its various forms is to be obeyed. Ministers submit to bishops, members to leaders, wives to husbands, children to parents, students to teachers, younger to elder, and so on.

These beliefs help us understand why community is so important in Amish life.

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One Response to “Fascinating Fact Friday – The Amish in Community”

  1. I am trying to find 2 books written by Mary Ellis: Not Far From Home & Way To a Man’s Heart . I read the first book can’t seem to find the other 2. Please let me know where I can find these. Thank You.


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