the Amish 5

The Amish, 4



Amish follower period (2)
advice erupt (2) reformation
reject baptize practice (2)
evolve found (2) record (2)
strict regulate progressive
opt decision movement (2)
settle promote believe (2)
define order (3) discipline
based conduct hindrance
dictate maintain foundation
permit rule (2) innovation
local take turn relationship
appoint preacher community
bishop opposite deliver (2)
deacon minister draw lots
choose appoint operate (2)
benefit based on spiritually
reject scripture contradict
buggy mention which stands for
reform covering boundary (2)
evil separate scripture
modest solid (2) in order to
submit authority symbolize
visible inclusive leadership
honor spiritual acceptance
remind promote accomplish
attain will (2) uniformity
strive collective well-being
barn acronym significant
non sermon resistance
mound imprison plain (2)
refuse arms (2) bear arms
bear as well as persecution
specify tradition come a long way
cherish value (2) take place






The Amish evolved from the Anabaptist that erupted in Europe in 1525 during Reformation period (Anabaptist simply means to rebaptize).

The idea came from three young men who rejected the Catholic practice of baptizing babies not long after birth. They believed that only an adult could the decision to become a follower of Jesus Christ, and therefore a person should be baptized only as an adult.

On January 21st 1525, the leader of this group, Konrad Grable performed the first recorded adult baptism.

It wasn’t until 1693, over one hundred years later, that the Amish were founded by Jacob Amen in Switzerland.

He believed that the Mennonites, one of the first groups to evolve from the Anabaptist movement, were too progressive. He opted for a stricter, more regulated lifestyle and thus created the Amish.

During the 1700s, the Amish began to immigrate to the United States in search of religious freedom. After settling in the areas of eastern Pennsylvania and Ohio, they wrote to the Amish in Germany for advice on how to conduct church business.

Their answer to the Amish Americans was the development of the Ordnung from 1765 to 1766 (Ordnung is a German word meaning order or discipline).

The Amish Ordnung is a set of unwritten, scripturally-based rules used to guide their everyday Christian life. It is the foundation of the Amish’s religious lifestyle.

The Ordnung dictates the way that the church conducts services, specifies which technological innovations are not permitted and defines the relationship between the local community and general society.

Families in the Amish community take turns holding church services in their homes. The men and women sit on opposite sides of the room, facing one another, and the preacher stands in the middle to deliver his message.

Bishops, ministers and deacons are appointed by drawing lots. The Amish believe in this way God does the choosing. These men are not paid for their services and hold their positions for life.

As mentioned before, the Amish base their feelings of technology on the Ordnung. They select certain technologies based on whether they will benefit the community socially, spiritually and financially.

For this reason, they reject the use of radios, television and the internet in homes. They believe that these technologies are hindrances, and they are contradictory to the Christian message.

The Amish do not drive cars and instead opt for a horse and buggy. But they do operate certain farm machinery, usually with the aid of animals.

The Ordnung also promotes the idea of boundaries between the Amish community and the rest of the world in order to maintain tradition. One of the most evident ways the Amish do this is by remaining plain or simple.

They believe Children of God should be separate from the world which is based on scripture in Romans First Peter and First John.

In order to be plain, they dress in simple, modest, solid colored clothing. The women wear dresses and the men wear white shirts and blue trousers. Amish women also wear a cap or covering on their head.

The meaning behind the wearing of the covering is quite complex. It symbolizes God’s all-inclusive order of authority and also the idea that men are to provide leadership and women are to submit.

Brenda M. Weaver, an Amish woman, enjoys wearing her head covering because it is a visible symbol of her acceptance of God’s order of authority. It honors God and man. It is a form of spiritual protection and it reminds her that she is a child of God.

Striving to be simple and plain by wearing similar dress is also a way of promoting uniformity within the Amish community.

The Amish believe that uniformity is important because of the scripture in Philippians 3:16. “Nevertheless, we’re two, we have already attained, let us walk by the same rule; let us mind the same thing.”

The Amish reject individuality and self-will in order to maintain spiritual well-being. They’re a collective community and believe in working together to accomplish things such as barn raisings, which take place in one day.

A significant religious practice that has governed the Amish life since birth is non-resistance. This idea was taken from Jesus’s Sermon on the Mound.

The Amish believe that evil should be returned with good. Because of this, the Amish refused to bear arms.

This practice of non-resistance caused the Amish to suffer persecution in the early years. During World War II, the Amish as well as other Anabaptists were to take up arms. When Amish men were drafted and refused to fight, they were imprisoned at Alcatraz.

The Amish have come a long way since their early years of persecution. Although they are a group of people that believe in maintaining tradition, they make changes when they feel it is necessary.

They still practice farming, but also work in shops and factories when farmland isn’t available. But the Amish hold onto their cherished values by living by the acronym JOY, which stands for “Jesus first, others second and yourself last.”

*     *     *     *     *     *     *


1. In 1525, there was a major split in Christianity. True or false? According to the video, what was the main difference between Anabaptists and Catholics?

2. What is the main difference between the Mennonites and the Amish?

3. The Amish originally came to the United States for better wages and economic opportunities. Is the right or wrong?

4. What is the Amish Ordnung?

5. To become a church leader (deacon, minister), does the person have to study at a seminary or theological college?

6. How do the Amish differ from other people?

7. Are the Amish individualistic or conformist and cooperative?

8. The Amish believe in fighting for freedom and defending themselves. Is this correct or incorrect?

9. Do they work as businessmen, engineers, doctors, lawyers? What do Amish women do?


A. I would like to be an Amish. Yes or no? Would your friend want to live an Amish lifestyle?

B. What are the advantages of living like the Amish? Are they any disadvantages of the Amish lifestyle?

C. Are there Amish-like communities in your country?

D. Should “regular” people adopt certain features of the Amish? Can modern people learn anything from the Amish?

E. What will happen in the future?


Share Button

Comments are closed.