Amish Ways

What Makes the Amish Culture So Sustainable?

Tuesday, May 16th, 2023

The Amish culture is known for its off grid and sustainable way of living developed and passed down over centuries. Living in harmony with nature and valuing the community’s well-being, the Amish lifestyle is based on simplicity, frugality, and self-sufficiency. 

The Amish have developed a sustainable lifestyle based on Amish beliefs and faith in God and respect for the environment and future generations by adopting practices such as farming via small-scale agriculture, avoiding modern conveniences, using transportation without leaving carbon footprints, reducing waste through natural ways, and sharing resources within the community.

In this article, we will explore the sustainable practices of the Amish culture and understand how the Amish way of living can provide a model for sustainable living for the wider society or the rest of the non-Amish world.

Amish Farmers on Agriculture

Every Amish man relies on small-scale and traditional farming methods prioritizing sustainability and soil conservation.

An Amish farm is typically less than 100 acres and often work by hand or with horse-drawn equipment.

One of the critical elements of Amish farming is their commitment to sustainable agriculture, which aims to preserve the land for future generations.

They have developed a way of farming that respects the environment and ensures the long-term viability of the land by avoiding modern farming practices that rely on synthetic inputs and heavy machinery.

While Amish farming practices are similar to organic farming in some ways, they are not necessarily the same, contrary to what many believe.

Organic farming is a regulated industry that adheres to specific standards, while Amish farming practices are based on their cultural traditions and values.

While some would consider their approach “organic farming,” it’s generally better to stick to the “sustainable” term.

Here are some sustainable farming practices that many Amish groups still use today:

  1. Crop rotation is an essential practice in Amish farming, and it involves planting different crops in the same field in alternating years. It helps to replenish and maintain the soil’s nutrients, prevent soil erosion and reduce pests and diseases.

The Amish plan their crop rotation for several years to ensure the soil remains healthy and balanced.

The crops that should be planted in each field depend on their nutrient requirements; some crops may add nutrients to the ground while others may take them away.

Once the crops are chosen, the Amish farmer alternates the crops from year to year to prevent soil depletion and promote healthy soil.


During fallow, farmers often plant cover crops like rye or clover to protect the soil from erosion, add nutrients, and prevent weeds, bacteria, and pests from building up.

  1. The Amish farmers rely on natural fertilizers to enrich the soil and promote healthy crop growth. Their choice of preventing chemical fertilizers reduces the risk of environmental damage, ensuring the long-term viability of their farms.

Some common natural fertilizers the Amish use are homemade compost (decomposed manure, food scraps, and yard waste), animal manure, cover crops (clover or rye), ground animal bones, and fish emulsion.

  1. The Amish practice pest control in various ways, focusing on natural and non-toxic methods that minimize environmental and human health harm.

Some of the Amish’s first steps in preventing pests in their farms are crop rotation, companion planting, setting up traps for rodents, handpicking of beneficial insects like ladybugs or praying mantises, etc.

When there’s already a pest infestation, they use natural pesticides derived from plants or minerals. Some examples of these natural pesticides are Pyrethrin, Neem Oil, Diatomaceous Earth, Garlic Spray, and Soap Spray.

  1. The Amish people have a strong tradition of manual labor in farming, relying on hand tools and physical work instead of machines.

Instead of using a tractor, the Amish use a horse-drawn-plow or a hand-held hoe to till the soil. It allows them to cultivate the soil more carefully and avoid soil compaction.

They often use hand tools, such as a hoe or a dibber, to plant seeds. It allows them to control the depth and spacing of the future roots more precisely.

When weeding, Amish often use hand-held tools, such as a hoe or a hand cultivator, to remove weeds from the soil. They use a sickle or a scythe to help them harvest crops manually.

  1. The Amish have a long-standing practice of seed-saving and preserving heirloom seeds, which are open-pollinated varieties passed down from generation to generation.

They carefully select seeds from the healthiest and most productive plants, ensuring they are of the highest quality.

After harvesting, they allow the seeds to dry thoroughly before storing them. It helps to prevent mold and mildew from developing and prolongs their life.

They store them in a cool, dry place like a root cellar or a cool basement.

They often use glass jars or paper envelopes to keep the seeds and label them carefully to ensure they know the variety and year the seeds were saved.

All Amish Communities on Energy

The Amish people avoid using modern technology, such as electricity, which reduces their energy consumption and carbon footprint.


Here are some ways that the Amish have become sustainable in avoiding electricity:

1. The Amish people rely on natural light for illumination, often positioning their homes and buildings to take advantage of the amount of sunlight that enters the area. They also use windows and skylights to allow light to penetrate deep into the building.

2. Instead of electric lighting, the Amish often use gas or oil lamps or kerosene lanterns for illumination. These light sources are not dependent on electricity and are relatively inexpensive.

3. The Amish often use wood stoves or other forms of non-electric appliances, such as hand-cranked washing machines, to perform daily tasks. These appliances are powered by human or animal energy and do not require electricity.

4. The Amish often rely on their community for support, sharing resources and knowledge to live sustainably without electricity. For example, they may share a phone line or a generator to power essential equipment.

Amish People on Transportation

The Amish have a unique transportation approach based on simplicity and sustainability. Here are some ways that the Amish are considered sustainable in regard to their chosen methods of transportation:

Horse and Buggy


The most common transportation for the Amish is a horse-drawn buggy. It allows them to travel relatively long distances without using fossil fuels and promotes a slower pace of living.


Some Amish communities also use bicycles as a form of transportation. It is a sustainable and healthy way to travel short distances.


When traveling long distances, the Amish often carpool with community members, sharing a ride to lessen motor vehicles on the road and minimize their carbon footprint.


For short trips within their community, the Amish often choose to walk, a sustainable and healthy way to travel.

Minimal Use of Motor Vehicles

While some Amish communities allow motor vehicles, they are typically used only for essential tasks such as medical emergencies, transporting goods, or even important field trips.

They avoid using motor vehicles for everyday transportation as much as possible.

Every Amish Community on Waste Reduction

The Amish value frugality and avoid waste by repairing and reusing items rather than throwing them away.


They reduce their environmental impact and promote a sustainable way of life by composting, recycling, minimizing packaging waste, reusing and repurposing items, and setting up community recycling centers.

Many Amish people also practice recycling, separating materials like glass, metal, and paper to be recycled rather than thrown away.

They are known for resourcefulness and often find creative ways to reuse and repurpose items. For example, they may turn old clothing into rags or quilts or use scrap wood to build furniture or structures.

Some Amish settlements, especially those in Lancaster County in Pennsylvania, have set up recycling centers where they can bring their recyclable materials and sort them for proper disposal.

The Amish Way of Sharing Resources Within the Community


The Amish embrace community and work together to support each other.

As an essential aspect of their sustainable lifestyle, people within each Amish community regularly share resources such as tools and equipment, reducing the need to buy and own individual items.

Here are some samples of them sharing resources among the community members that have already become a regular part of the Amish life and traditional practices:

1. One of the most well-known customs of the Amish community sharing is the tradition of barn raising.

When a community member needs a new barn or other structure, everyone comes together to help build it. This Amish tradition not only saves money and resources but also strengthens the bonds of the group.

2. The Amish often share tools and equipment among community members. For example, if someone needs to borrow a tractor, they can ask a neighbor rather than purchasing their own.

It reduces the number of items that need to be bought and maintained and promotes a culture of sharing and cooperation.

3. The Amish often share food within the community. For instance, if one Amish family has a surplus of vegetables from their garden, they may share them with their neighbors rather than letting them go to waste.

This practice reduces food waste and helps ensure that every Amish home has access to fresh and healthy food.

4. The Amish often share childcare responsibilities among Amish children. For example, if one family needs to go out of town, they may ask a neighbor to watch their children.

Aside from reducing the need to pay for childcare services, it also helps Amish children bond with their neighbors and expose them to the rest of the community.


The Amish life provides a fascinating example of sustainability in action. Their commitment to simplicity, community, and resourcefulness within their respective Amish community has allowed them to thrive for centuries without degrading the natural world or compromising their values..

From their approach to waste reduction and resource sharing to their reliance on horse-drawn transportation, the Amish offer valuable lessons for anyone, even a non-Amish man, seeking a more sustainable and fulfilling life.

The Amish demonstrate that a more straightforward, more connected way of life can be rewarding and sustainable for individuals, communities, and the planet Earth.

Do the Amish Ever Serve in the Military?

Monday, May 8th, 2023

The Amish community is known for its pacifist beliefs and commitment to nonviolence. As a result, many people may wonder whether the Amish ever serve in the military. This question raises complex issues about Amish beliefs, values, and relationships with the modern society.

Most Amish men do not serve in the military, and the community has a long-standing exemption from conscription. However, there have been some exceptions to this general rule, and the issue of Amish military service continues to be debated and discussed.

While there is no simple answer, exploring the Amish stance on military service can illuminate this fascinating community’s unique cultural and religious traditions. Read on to learn more.

The Amish Community Views on Military Service

The Amish Community Views on Military Service

The Amish community’s stance on military service is rooted in their religious beliefs and commitment to nonviolence. They believe taking arms against others or engaging in warfare, even serving a more significant cause or a country, is wrong.

The Amish generally follow the teachings of Jesus Christ and the Amish church, particularly the Sermon on the Mount, which calls for a rejection of violence and a commitment to mercy, forgiveness, and nonresistance.

The Amish culture and Amish belief in nonviolence is closely tied to the religious group’s emphasis on community and peacemaking. The Amish people seek to live in harmony with one another and resolve conflicts peacefully without resorting to force or brutality.

They believe that war and military service undermine these values and lead to more violence, division, and destruction.

What Does the Amish Church Say About Non-Resistance?

No matter which Amish community an Amish person belongs to, the Amish way of life is generally known as the living interpretation of every word of the Bible since this is what the Amish church has taught them since the beginning.

What Does the Amish Church Say About Non-Resistance?

The Amish, among other Christian groups, base their commitment to non-resistance on these teachings from the Bible.

  1. “Do not resist an evil person. If anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to them the other cheek also” (Matthew 5:39, NIV).
  2. “Do not repay evil with evil or insult with insult. On the contrary, repay evil with blessing, because to this you were called so that you may inherit a blessing” (1 Peter 3:9, NIV).
  3. “But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you” (Matthew 5:44, NIV).
  4. “If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone” (Romans 12:18, NIV).
  5. “Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse” (Romans 12:14, NIV).
  6. “Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good” (Romans 12:21, NIV).

Are the Amish Conscientious Objectors?

All men, Amish or not, were legally required to register for the draft during the war, but they may request a “conscientious objector status” that would exempt them from combat duty.

World War I

During the late spring of 1917, The U.S. began a national conscription service as they entered World War I. Some Amish men acquired exemptions for farm deferments as Conscientious Objectors, but others were required to report to camps.

World War I

Most drafted Amish men who refused to enter the service were still required to perform an alternative service to fulfill their obligation to the country.

Many Amish men served in Civilian Public Service (CPS) camps, which the government established to provide non-combatant service opportunities for conscientious objectors.

Amish men and other Conscientious Objectors in CPS camps performed various tasks, such as working in hospitals, conducting scientific research, and fighting forest fires.

The work was often physically demanding and required long hours. Still, the Amish and other Conscientious Objectors saw it as a way to contribute to the war effort without compromising their beliefs.

World War II

After the Japanese launched a surprise attack at Pearl Harbor, the U.S. began military conscription when they joined World War II on December 7, 1941.

Seven hundred and seventy-two Old Order Amish men were drafted. Again, they declared themselves Conscientious Objectors and didn’t join the second world war.

Korean War and Vietnam War

Korean War and Vietnam War

During the beginning of the Korean War in 1950, the U.S. draft system no longer exempted COs. Each Amish person drafted was required to enter some alternative service as part of the I-W program —the same situation when the U.S. entered the Vietnam War in 1954.

Amish people declared Conscientious Objectors had spent years working in government or NGOs, where most existed outside Amish settlements.

In 1969, the Steering Committee and the Selective Service System completed an agreement that allowed young men in the Amish faith to serve their I-W alternative service on Amish farms instead of outside world’s NGOs when chosen.

Amish COs could now spend years on farms contracted by the Amish church, keeping them within their church’s reach and avoiding the temptations of the modern world.

The Aftermath of War for Amish Communities

The Aftermath of War for Amish Communities

War can change people’s views, whether they’re Amish or non-Amish. Memories from these events don’t fade quickly. Many Amish children, for instance, grow up with war stories told by their parents or grandparents.

These are not fairy tales; instead, these are actual accounts of their relatives being victims of harassment and attacks during World Wars I and II, Korea, and Vietnam. 

The Amish who declared themselves conscientious objectors faced challenges and discrimination during these periods, such as being viewed as unpatriotic or neglecting their duty to their country even if they were working in an alternative service. 

There were stories that COs, including the Amish, were beaten in military training camps because they refused to join the combat during the first world war.

Howard Plank, a member of the Amish community in Arthur, Illinois, told Chicago Tribune his own story during the Vietnam War when someone threw a brick at his buggy and the time when his brother was shot while visiting his girlfriend.

Stories about Amish families being charged with substitution fees and heavy war taxes and forced to give their possessions like wagons, farms, and even homes to armies were also told.

The religious persecution that happened in Europe that led them to leave in the first place, the pressure caused by the war in the new land they thought would be their new home.

The Amish communities’ commitment to non-resistance reportedly caused the first Amish families in Berks County, Pennsylvania to look for a better and more peaceful place to live in.

Three Documented Amish People Who Joined the Military

While the Amish refuse to join the military service in general, like in any other collectives, there’ll always be a few people who would think differently.

However, this doesn’t always mean they’re defying the rules they grew up to. For these people who were proudly raised Amish, serving their country is just as important as their Amish beliefs.

Floyd Helmuth

Floyd Helmuth was a member of one of the Amish groups in Illinois. At the start of World War II, 18-year-old Helmuth enlisted in the United States Navy.

Helmuth spent three months in a Michigan boot camp before training in Florida as an engineer for approximately four months. In mid-1945, Helmuth was sent to the South Pacific as a helmsperson for LCSL 104, a landing craft support boat holding a unit of 70 Navy sailors.

He joined the most significant amphibious assaults in the Pacific during World War II – the Battle of Okinawa or the “Operation Iceberg.”

After the war, Helmuth settled in Tyler, where he worked as a rancher for Southland Distribution and Tyler Foam Co. He was 88 years old when he died on June 25, 2013.

Malinda Dennison

Malinda Dennison grew up in one of the small Amish settlements in Spartansburg, Pennsylvania. Due to her drive to gain new knowledge and try new things beyond the 8th-grade education she received from one of the Amish private schools in her Amish community, she left and started a new chapter of her life that eventually led her to graduate from Fort Leonard Wood as a military police Soldier with Company E, 795th Military Police Battalion.

That’s also where Dennison met her husband, Sgt. 1st Class Ross Dennison, during college days. According to her, he inspired her to join the Army.

Dennison’s Amish upbringing played a vital role in making her transition to Army life more manageable than expected. First, all Amish children are trained to wake up early and do chores. As part of the military training, everyone should wake up at 5 in the morning daily.

The Amish population is known to have strong work ethics. Dennison grew up with a naturally excellent disposition in work and life and a powerful desire to always succeed.

Dennison’s integrity and duty are the Army values she’s proud of the most. As of 2019, she decided to join the Army Reserves so she could work and continue her education while serving her country.

Andrew Stoltzfus


Andrew K. Stoltzfus, born in 1924 on a farm in Intercourse, Pennsylvania, grew up in a large Amish family. However, unlike Floyd Helmuth and Malinda Dennison’s stories, this one has a different ending.

Stoltzfus’s mother died when he was still young. He left his Amish family, the church, and the entire community to enlist in the U.S. Army in the early 1940s.

Being part of the Old Order Amish group, Stoltzfus’ decision to join the Army was met with mixed reactions from his family.

By the time Stoltzfus enlisted, the war suddenly caused a need to fill the depleted ranks of foot soldiers. Because of this, he was suddenly reassigned from the air force to become a member of L Company, 121st Regiment, 8th Division.

Before Stoltzfus got deployed overseas in 1943, he visited his family back at Intercourse. One year later, he became one of the “unusually heavy causalities” during an attack on the German town of Hurtgen. He fell on November 23, 1944.

Today, Stoltzfus lies in Grave 40, Row 1, Plot D of the 57-acre Henri-Chapelle American Cemetery and Memorial in Belgium, together with 7,991 other American soldiers who fell fighting along the German border.

According to his brother, Reuben, he didn’t exactly like the Army due to his Amish beliefs. But despite all that, Stoltzfus left everything behind at a young age to defend freedom alongside millions of Americans during World War II.


The Amish community believes in non-resistance and conscientious objection to military service. While there have been exceptions to this rule, most Amish choose to serve their communities in other ways, such as through farming and other trades. 

The Amish have faced harassment and persecution during the war but remain steadfast in their convictions.

The stories of Amish veterans who struggled with the conflict between their faith and their duty to serve their country serve as a testament to the challenges faced by those who follow the Amish way of life.

What Is The Amish Concept of Time?

Wednesday, May 3rd, 2023

The Amish are known for their slowness in adapting to the modern world due to religious reasons, simplicity, and isolation from the rest. They don’t own most of the stuff non-Amish people do, and they do things differently. One example is their concept of time. Even though most Amish have clocks, their relationship with timepieces is limited because the Amish life rotates daily in a specific rhythm that is not dependent on clock time.

The Amish concept of time is closely tied to their religious beliefs and traditional way of life, emphasizing the importance of living in the present moment and prioritizing the needs of the family and the entire Amish community over individual desires.

To get a better understanding, read on.

Understanding The Amish Concept of Time

Understanding The Amish Concept of Time

The traditional Amish people view time as cyclical rather than linear. One example of cyclical time is the changing of the seasons, which happens in a predictable cycle each year. Similarly, day and night cycles, the moon’s phases, and the planets’ movements all demonstrate natural cyclical patterns. 

The Amish see the repetition of the seasons and the cycles of nature as evidence of God’s plan and order for the world. They believe in the idea of “Steadfastness.”

In practical terms, “steadfastness” for the Amish culture means being committed to their religious beliefs and practices, including regular church attendance, praying, and following the rules of their church community.

It also means being committed to their family and community, supporting one another in need, and upholding traditional Amish values.

The Amish also believe that the cyclical nature of time helps to reinforce their sense of community and interdependence. By living in close-knit communities and relying on each other for support, they can beat every life’s ups and downs and adapt to the changing seasons and circumstances.

The Amish religious beliefs dictate that focusing on the present moment rather than the future or past and living in harmony with nature is essential to leading a fulfilling life.

By prioritizing the immediate needs of their land, animals, and families, they can live more sustainably and mindfully, which the Amish church believes aligns with God’s plan for the world.

Do Amish People Use Clocks?

Although the world’s giant cuckoo clock is built in the largest Amish population in Amish Country, Northeast Ohio, most of the general Amish population use clocks and other time-keeping devices for practical purposes only. It includes coordinating Amish community events or keeping track of appointments with non-Amish people.

Do Amish People Use Clocks

As we all know, people from traditional Amish communities do not use modern conveniences like mobile phones or computers. Therefore, they are not as closely tied to clock time as other non-Amish people.

What Timepieces Do the Amish Use?

The Amish generally do not use modern timepieces such as digital watches or smartphones, as these are considered worldly and disruptive to their traditional way of life. Instead, they rely on more conventional timekeeping methods that align with their simple, self-sufficient lifestyle.

What timepieces do the Amish use?

Some Amish communities may use mechanical clocks, such as grandfather clocks or wall clocks, which are powered by weights or springs and do not require electricity.

These clocks are often handcrafted and passed down through generations, and they can serve as both practical timekeepers and decorative objects in the home.

In addition, the Amish may also use natural cues to keep track of time, such as the position of the sun or the sounds of the natural environment.

For example, they may know it’s time to start their workday when the rooster crows or it’s time to rest when the sun sets.

Do the Amish Observe Daylight Saving Time?

While some Amish communities may choose to observe Daylight Saving Time for practical reasons, such as to avoid conflicts with the schedules of non-Amish neighbors, many Amish communities opt out of the time change altogether. 

Do the Amish Observe Daylight Saving Time?

The Amish communities’ decision to not observe Daylight Saving Time is due to some reasons. They believe living a life in harmony with nature and the seasons and adjusting the clocks twice a year can disrupt this natural rhythm.

Additionally, many Amish people work in agriculture, which is heavily influenced by the seasons and natural daylight. Changing the clocks can significantly impact their work schedules and productivity.

The Amish have a strong sense of community, and they often prioritize consistency and unity within their communities over conformity to external social norms, such as Daylight Saving Time.

Does following Daylight Saving Time violate any law by the Amish culture?

Daylight Saving Time is not directly addressed in Amish religious laws or beliefs, as it is a relatively modern concept.

However, some Amish communities may choose not to observe Daylight Saving Time for various reasons, including their traditional way of life and rejection of modern technology.

What Time Do the Amish Go to Sleep?

While Amish families do not necessarily follow a rigid schedule or adhere strictly to clock time, they typically go to bed early and wake up early, often before sunrise.

While the exact time may vary depending on individual preferences and the specific demands of their work or community, it is common for the Amish to go to bed between 8:00 PM and 9:00 PM.

Because the Amish lifestyle emphasizes physical labor and hard work, getting enough rest is an essential part of maintaining good health and being able to carry out their daily tasks.

Since the Amish community and their families are on top of the Amish values, like what their church services teach them, retiring early at night also gives them more time to engage with those around them.

How Do the Amish Wake Up On Time?

The Amish generally wake up early in the morning, often before sunrise, and their waking time is often dictated by the natural rhythms of the seasons and the demands of their farm work.

How Do the Amish Wake Up On Time?

However, in cases where they need to wake up at a specific time, such as for a community event or appointment with a non-Amish person, they may use an alarm clock or rely on other Amish community members to wake them up.

In some homes, one of the older Amish children may be responsible for waking up the rest of the family. This person may use a simple alarm clock, but they may also rely on other cues, such as the rooster’s crowing or the behavior of animals, to determine when it is time to wake up.

In addition, many Amish settlement areas have a bell or a loud instrument to signal the start of the day or the beginning of a community event. It coordinates the activities of the entire Amish community and ensures everyone is on the same schedule.

How Many Hours a Day Do the Amish Work?

The amount of time the Amish work each day can vary depending on the season, the specific demands of their work, and the customs of their particular community.

However, the Amish are generally known for their strong work ethic and often work long hours, especially during the busy farming seasons.

During the spring and summer, when the seasons are favorable for outdoor work and the crops need tending, the Amish may work up to 12 hours a day or more.

This work may involve planting, cultivating, and harvesting crops, caring for livestock, and performing other tasks related to their farming lifestyle.

When the weather is colder and the days are shorter during the fall and winter, the Amish may work fewer hours daily but still engage in various activities such as woodworking, quilting, and other crafts.

What Do the Amish Do In Their Free Time?

The Amish people’s free time is often spent engaged in activities that reflect the centuries-old Amish tradition. Some everyday leisure activities in the Amish culture include:

Spending time with family

Spending time with family

The Amish place a high value on family life and often spend their free time with loved ones, including participating in family dinners and outings.

Engaging in manual crafts

Many Amish enjoy working with their hands and creating handmade items such as quilts, woodworking, basket weaving, and other crafts.

Playing games and sports

Playing games and sports

The Amish enjoy playing games and sports such as softball, volleyball, horseshoes, board games, and card games.

Attending church services and social events

The Amish attend church services and other religious events to connect with their faith and community.

Reading and storytelling

Many Amish enjoy reading books, particularly those related to their faith, and telling and listening to stories.

Visiting neighbors and friends

The Amish value strong community relationships and often spend time visiting with neighbors and friends, particularly during social events such as weddings and church services.


The Amish concept of time is grounded in their religious beliefs and values, their close relationship with nature, and the natural world’s rhythms.

The Amish believe that time is a gift from God and should be used wisely to serve God and the community. They believe in the importance of living in the current moment and making the most of each day rather than being preoccupied with the past or future.

What Is the Amish Parenting Style? Are They Strict?

Monday, April 24th, 2023

While Amish children may differ from non-Amish children in some ways, they are often well-prepared for life within the Amish community. Any parent’s goal is to prepare their children to become valuable members of their respective society. Because of this, many leave us wondering how most Amish families raise their children. What is the Amish parenting style?

A focus on responsibility, discipline, and community values characterizes the Amish parenting style. Amish parents prioritize instilling traditional values and customs in Amish children, such as hard work, respect for elders, and obedience to authority.

To know more about how Amish are as parents, read on.

The Amish Parenting Style

What is the Amish parenting style?

When the world doesn’t understand something, misconceptions are born. It is often the case for Amish people. Many untruths have been voiced from one mouth to another, since they live under a big cloud of mystery.

Many consider the Amish people unique and different, but we sometimes forget they’re like us in some ways. For one, they’re also parents. Their style in raising kids? Maybe.


Teaching responsibility is an aspect of Amish culture rooted in their values of community, self-sufficiency, character development, and tradition.

Amish families place a high value on responsibility and independence and teach all their family members these values from a very young age. Here are some ways how Amish parents teach their children responsibility:

Assigning chores

Many children in Amish families are typically assigned chores from a very early age, around 4 or 5. These chores usually include feeding animals, washing dishes, or helping with farm work.

Assigning chores

Generally, Amish boys help their fathers with the outside chores, while Amish girls stay home with their mothers doing the household tasks. 

In addition, Amish children being involved with chores helps them develop one of the central values of the Amish life, which is a strong work ethic.

This value is taught early, which allows younger kids to understand that work is a necessary and valuable part of Amish life and that everyone must do their part to ensure the well-being of their family and all the Amish families in their community as well.

Teaching practical skills

If you live in areas with many Amish families and settlements nearby, you’ll commonly see many Amish parents with their children working in the fields and shops.

Teaching practical skills

They teach their children practical skills such as farming, gardening, sewing, and cooking, which are necessary for a self-sufficient Amish lifestyle.

Encouraging independence

The Amish people raise their children to be independent and self-reliant, which helps them develop responsibility and decision-making skills.

The Amish youth are often encouraged to take on tasks and solve problems independently, with their parents’ guidance as needed.

Expecting accountability

In a typical Amish home, each Amish child is often held accountable for his action, and his parents expect him to take responsibility for his mistakes, even at an early age. He must apologize and make amends every time.



Discipline is an essential value within the Amish community, and Amish families use various methods to teach their children discipline and self-control. Here are some ways that Amish parents teach discipline:

Setting clear expectations

Parents set clear expectations for their children’s behavior and work, and they communicate these expectations clearly and consistently.

Children are expected to follow the rules, complete chores, and help all their Amish family members and neighbors in various ways.

Using natural consequences

Parents often allow natural consequences when children misbehave or fail to follow expectations. For example, if a child fails to complete a chore, they may be unable to participate in a family activity until it is finished.

Providing consistent consequences

When discipline is necessary, Amish parents provide consistent consequences. It may involve withholding privileges or assigning extra chores. These are clear and are consistently applied across all children.

Emphasizing repentance and forgiveness

Within the Amish community, repentance and forgiveness are emphasized as essential Amish values. When a child misbehaves, they are encouraged to recognize their mistake, seek forgiveness, and make amends.

Using physical discipline

While physical discipline is not the first choice for Amish parents, it is occasionally used in cases of serious misbehavior.

The use of physical discipline in raising children is guided by the belief that it should be done in a controlled and loving manner, and never in anger or frustration.

Community Values

Amish parents play an essential role in teaching these values to Amish children, as these values help to create a strong sense of community and shared identity within the Amish community.

Community Values

They are passed down from generation to generation through Amish families and across different Amish communities.

Modeling behavior

Parents model good behavior to children while carefully reflecting the values of the community. Amish children learn by observing the actions of their parents and other adults in the community.

Involving children in community activities

Involving children in community activities

Amish children are engaged in various community activities, such as church services, social events, and volunteer work. These activities provide opportunities for children to learn and practice community values.

Encouraging service and volunteerism

The Amish strongly emphasize service and volunteerism, and children are encouraged to participate in community service projects.

It helps children learn the importance of helping others and working together for the benefit of the community.

Teaching respect for authority

Within all Amish communities, respect for authority is a significant value. The Amish teach all Amish children to respect their parents, Amish church leaders, and other authority figures in the community.

Emphasizing humility and simplicity

The Amish value humility and simplicity, and children are taught to live modestly and avoid pride and arrogance. Amish children are also trained to value hard work and self-sufficiency, the fundamental aspects of the Amish culture.

Why Are Amish Children So Well-Behaved?

Amish children are often known for their excellent behavior due to their upbringing and the cultural values of Amish communities.

Why are Amish children so well-behaved?

The Amish parents’ consistency in their parenting style, which includes enforcing consequences for misbehavior, plays a considerable part.

In addition, the Amish communities’ limited exposure to the modern world also limits Amish teenagers’ exposure to negative influences such as drugs, violence, and other unhealthy behaviors.

Are Amish Parents Strict?

The Amish are typically considered to be strict in their parenting style. Since the Amish daily life is usually dependent on the bible, their parenting might have come from the famous bible verse, “He who spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves him is diligent to discipline him” (Proverbs 13:24).

This biblical proverb is reportedly invoked in Amish homes and even Amish schools. While non-Amish parents may see this differently, the Amish families’ belief that spanking and their other parenting styles are vital for their children’s healthy development is stronger.

Are Amish parents strict?

However, Amish parents are also known for their love and devotion to their children. They consider them their greatest earthly treasure and their biggest blessing from God.


Each Amish family is highly valued in the Amish community, and parents strive to provide each Amish child with a stable and nurturing home environment. 

Despite Amish people’s strict parenting style, it is often balanced by prioritizing their family as they love spending time with them and creating a strong family bond.

Amish families often participate in activities and treat their work in the fields or inside their homes as fun family time.

Amish parents, like most parents, love their children because they are their flesh and blood and have a solid emotional attachment to them.

Their only difference from many non-Amish families is that they strive to raise children consistent with Amish beliefs and values.

Do Amish People Take Birth Control? What Methods Do They Use?

Sunday, April 23rd, 2023

Living a lifestyle rooted in tradition and faith, the Amish are known for their unique customs and beliefs. But amidst their seemingly idyllic existence, a question arises: do Amish people take birth control?

Traditionally, the Amish people oppose and condemn all birth control methods. The Amish church believes contraception interferes with God’s will and natural order. However, there is no religious doctrine about birth control, as Amish ordinances and practices can vary among Amish groups.

 In this article, we’ll explore the Amish approach to family planning, its cultural significance, and what it reveals about their way of life.

What Is Forbidden for Amish Women Regarding Birth Control?

While no religious doctrine forbids Amish women to practice birth control, some general beliefs and traditional practices are commonly observed in many Amish communities.

Amish society is taught that God is the author of life and that all Amish girls must be open to having children as part of God’s plan when the right time comes. Procreation is one of the main priorities when the Amish marry.

As a result, when some of these Amish girls marry, they rely on natural family planning methods to space out their children’s births or for any health and financial grounds.

Modern birth control methods, such as hormonal contraception, intrauterine devices (IUDs), and artificial options like birth control pills, mini-pills, patches, shots, and vaginal rings, are strictly forbidden in many Amish communities.

Some Amish leaders, whether from New and Old Order Amish groups, may view them as sinful or immoral since they are artificial barriers that may likely prevent God’s blessings from happening.

What Kind of Birth Control Do They Use?

As established earlier, while many Amish communities forbid women to use birth control, especially those used in the modern world, in fear of putting an indestructible wall between couples and God’s blessings, some Amish from the general population use birth control by more natural means. 

These natural family planning methods include calendar calculation, basal body temperature charting, and lactational amenorrhea.

Theoretically, since these natural options are not 100 percent effective all the time, they still leave room for God’s perfect will, just in case. Unlike artificial birth control methods, Christians hardly see these as “taking a life away.” 

Calendar Calculation

Calendar calculation is a method of family planning that involves tracking a woman’s menstrual cycle to estimate when she is most likely to ovulate (release an egg from her ovaries) and, therefore, most likely to become pregnant. It is also known as the calendar, fertility awareness, or rhythm method.

Using the calendar method, the Amish typically begins tracking her menstrual cycles for several months to establish the length of her average cycle.

She then identifies the period of her menstrual cycle when she is most likely to ovulate based on the number of days before and after her average cycle length. During this period, Amish couples can avoid sexual intercourse.

Basal Body Temperature Charting

Basal body temperature (BBT) charting is a method of birth control that involves tracking a woman’s basal body temperature throughout her menstrual cycle to identify the days when she is most likely to ovulate and, therefore, most fertile. This method is also known as the symptothermal method.

Using BBT charting as birth control, an Amish woman takes her temperature every morning before getting out of bed, ideally at the same time each day. She then records her temperature on a chart to track changes throughout her menstrual cycle.

During the first part of the menstrual cycle, the basal body temperature is typically lower, but it rises after ovulation due to an increase in the hormone progesterone. By tracking these changes, the Amish woman can identify the day of ovulation and when she is most fertile.

Amish couples can abstain from sexual intercourse or use contraception during the fertile window to prevent pregnancy. This method can be effective if used correctly and consistently, but it requires high commitment and discipline to track temperature accurately and unfailingly.

Lactational Amenorrhea

More Amish females use lactational amenorrhea as a natural form of birth control. Lactational amenorrhea occurs because the hormone prolactin, released during breastfeeding, can suppress the release of other hormones necessary for ovulation.

As a result, Amish women who exclusively breastfeed their babies and have not resumed menstruation are less likely to become pregnant.

However, specific criteria must be met to use lactational amenorrhea as a reliable form of birth control. These include:

  1. The baby is less than six months old.
  2. The mother exclusively breastfeeds the baby, with no supplemental feedings or pacifiers.
  3. The mother has not resumed menstruation since giving birth.
  4. The mother is not using hormonal birth control.

If these criteria are met, lactational amenorrhea can be up to 98% effective at preventing pregnancy in the first six months after giving birth. However, the effectiveness of lactational amenorrhea decreases as the baby starts to consume solid foods, the frequency and duration of breastfeeding decrease, or the mother resumes menstruation.

Do Amish Use Condoms?

Condoms are considered a modern and artificial form of birth control. The Amish reject modern and artificial things by nature. Therefore, the use of condoms by Amish men is strictly forbidden and condemned in most, if not all, Amish communities.

Why Do Some Amish Families Practice Birth Control?

The Amish community is not monolithic, and practices can vary among different sects and communities. As with any community, some Amish couples marrying with health or financial limitations may choose to use birth control.

According to a book named “An Amish Paradox,”  an Old Order Amish woman commented that artificial birth control is wrong when used for selfish reasons. There won’t be any problem for married couples as long as the reasons behind it are medical and financial issues.

On the other hand, a father from New Order Amish stated that many Amish use birth control now. Apparently, the only thing that bothers them is their conscience about it.

Why Do The Amish Have Larger Families?

Now, let’s look further at why Amish people have large families and where birth control can fit in. In addition to their religious beliefs, there are practical reasons for the Amish emphasis on large families.


Amish children are highly valued, and having many is seen as a way to fulfill God’s commandment to be fruitful and multiply. It is also seen as a sign of prosperity and a source of strength for the community.

The Amish are a close-knit community that relies heavily on agriculture and manual work to sustain their way of life. Having many Amish children ensures a steady labor supply to help with the farm work and other tasks necessary for the Amish community to function.

How Many Children Do They Have?

The number of children that Amish families have can vary widely depending on several factors, including individual beliefs, family circumstances, and community norms. However, it is common for Amish families to have six to eight children, and families with more than ten children are not unheard of.

The Largest Amish Family Known to Date

Today, John Troyer from near Kokomo, Indiana, holds the record for having the largest Amish family. He has twelve children with his first wife, two-step and seventeen violations with his second—a total of thirty-one Amish children inside their household.


At the end of the day, the decision to have a large family ultimately rests with each Amish couple. Even though there’s no written rule in any Amish church in America that is against delaying or spacing-out births, they respect individual decisions regarding family size while still upholding the value of children and the importance of family in the Amish culture.

While most Amish couples prefer it large, some may opt for smaller families due to personal circumstances or beliefs. Hence, some Amish use birth control to regulate the number of children in their household. Anyway, having more than one can handle is a sin, too.

Can Amish Marry Mennonites? Here’s What You Should Know

Friday, March 17th, 2023

When it comes to marriage, the Amish and Mennonite communities share many similarities in their beliefs and practices, including a commitment to simple living, pacifism, and separation from mainstream society. However, the question remains: can Amish marry Mennonites?

The Amish are forbidden from getting married to anyone who hasn’t been baptized into their community. That includes Mennonites, who are perceived as outsiders.

If you are interested to know about Amish marriage traditions and beliefs, this is an interesting read.

Can Amish Marry Mennonites?


Amish are not allowed to marry anyone outside their religious circle, even Mennonites. A Mennonite wishing to marry an Amish should convert and be baptized into the Amish church.

Other faiths may view Mennonites and Amish to be similar in faith. However, marriage between these two congregations is not allowed. Amish people consider marriage as their passage into adulthood.

Marriage is also viewed as a commitment or promise to remain Amish and follow the Amish faith.

Both Amish and Mennonites follow marriage rules based on their own religious beliefs. Amish people are required to marry a fellow Amish that is within their community.

They also believe that Amish weddings should happen after harvest, the Amish bride should not wear a white wedding dress, and be required to build the newlyweds a wedding house.

Mennonites follow four marriage rules. Mennonite marriages impose that there should be no sex, alcohol, dancing, and acts of vanity before marriage. Mennonite couples who admit to having premarital sex may not be allowed to marry in the church.

Mennonite weddings are discouraged from being luxurious. The wedding dress is expected to be modestly designed and floral decorations at a bare minimum or muted.

However, since Mennonites are accepting of technology and social media, you can expect Mennonite weddings gradually becoming elaborate.

Sparkling juice and fruit punches are welcome in Mennonite weddings, while alcoholic drinks have no place on the tables. Dancing is avoided in Mennonite weddings, and wedding music is limited to hymnal or classical pieces.

Do Amish and Mennonites Get Along?

Amish and Mennonite groups share a common cultural and religious heritage. The founder of the Amish church of Anabaptism, Jakob Amman, was brought up with Mennonite influence.

Some Mennonite church practices may be observed in the Amish church.

Amish and Mennonites have their differences, and socialization between these two groups is rare. So it is expected that marriage between these two is highly unlikely.

Amish people oppose Mennonites for being open to the outside world; hence, compromising their religious purity.

Amish are stricter compared to Mennonites, for they prefer harsher punishment for those excommunicated from their congregation. In terms of everyday living, Mennonites accept technology and use modern equipment to have a comfortable life, while Amish reject modernization and comfort.

Even in missionary work, Amish and Mennonites have different practices. Amish prefer to live in seclusion and not share their faith to the world. Mennonites on the other hand willingly share their faith to others and have spread to more than 50 countries worldwide.

So, do Amish and Mennonites get along? They may not entirely get along, but both groups are people loving and wish nothing ill towards others.

Can Amish Marry Non-Amish?

The Amish church demands that both parties be Amish. | Photo: friartux

The Amish church strictly requires that both parties should be Amish (baptized in the Amish faith). If conservative Amish allow mixed marriages, this could destabilize their Amish community.

Amish are expected to maintain their communities and settlements. Hence, they are discouraged to meet outsiders. If they leave their communities, they are putting their faith in danger by exposing themselves to worldly temptations.

Amish women and men may marry non-Amish if the outsider learns their faith and decides to be baptized. The outsider will be accepted into the Amish community, and they will be allowed to get married.

Amish are conservative in that as much as possible they do not encourage outsiders to join their congregation.

Amish Dating Culture

An Amish is allowed to meet and interact with non-Amish people. It is possible for an Amish person to meet an outsider at work. However, meeting non-Amish is uncommon because their chance to meet outsiders is quite limited. 

Because of this, Amish youth date fellow Amish. They often meet in Amish church, or when visiting other Amish communities and joining festivities.

You can easily distinguish a married Amish from an unmarried (single) Amish. A single Amish girl wears a black bonnet which they call kapps while the married ones wear white. Wearing a bonnet is part of the Amish dress code for women, which signify their marital status.

On the other hand, Amish men who are married are expected to grow their beards while single Amish men should cut and trim their beards.

An Amish man growing a beard is a core belief in the Amish faith that they must uphold. This core belief separates Amish from other Mennonite groups and Christian sects.

Amish teenagers have strict dating rules, with the exception of rumspringa. Rumspringa refers to the adolescent period beginning at age 16.

At this stage, the teenager can no longer be controlled by their parents on weekends and are free to go where they want to. Likewise, the Amish church has no control over them, for they are not yet baptized into the Amish congregation.

Rumspringa is like a taste of outside life for many Amish youths. The purpose of rumspringa is to show and expose them to life outside their church and isolated community.

It is also an opportunity for them to see the life they would have to give up when they are baptized into the church.

Another interesting dating practice by the Amish is bundling. Although Amish are generally conservative, they also have a modern approach to dating, which is shown through bundling. 

Premarital sex is strictly forbidden during Amish courship stage. It is a practice where an Amish woman and man are to spend a night together in bed, fully clothed, and getting to know each other.

Bundling is not about sex. It is an ancient Amish dating custom requiring the practice of self-restraint.   

Amish Wedding Beliefs and Traditions


Courtship and marriage are taken very seriously by the Amish people. The Amish faith considers marriage a sacred act, with the intention is to find a suitable life partner to build and grow a family.

Amish youth are baptized into the church by 18–22 years old. Once they are baptized and part of the church, they can soon marry a fellow Amish. Marriage between two Amish individuals is the reason behind large Amish families.

Amish youth may be allowed to meet and date outsiders. Sadly, marriage is not allowed between them unless the non-Amish person decides to be baptized and become Amish.

Marriage in Amish communities only happens during the wedding season, which is typically between the months of October and March.

This wedding season is a result of the Amish people’s desire to celebrate Amish weddings post harvest, since Amish life is centered around agriculture.

Marriage practices in an Amish community is also similar to most weddings. It starts off with a ceremony and followed by the communal feasting of Amish wedding foods.

Amish food recipes are handed down to the next generation as well. The recipes are carefully placed in a handwoven, wooden bread box. This box is an iconic piece in Amish kitchens.

The Amish live a simple life and this is also manifested in the wedding gown worn by Amish women and the wedding table decorations. The bride’s wedding gown has a modest design and is sown by hand. 

Amish wedding gowns are not white. Amish women are sewn into a blue or purple dress which they continue to wear for church service, and they wear them again when they die.

The concept of a honeymoon is different for the Amish. On their wedding night, the newlyweds are to spend the night in the home of the bride’s parents. They are not allowed to go elsewhere on their wedding night.

The next day, the newly married couple are expected to wake up early and help with the post-wedding celebration cleanup. The Amish couple will have to stay in the community and help build their new home. 

Carpentry skills are necessary that Amish men should learn from childhood. A skill which is passed down to their children. Hence, building a new home for the newly married couple will be quick and easy.

Polygamy is not practiced in the Amish faith. Divorce as well is not allowed. The Church Elders find ways to reconcile the couple to make their marriage work.

Can Mennonites Date Non-Mennonites?

Traditionally, Mennonites are prohibited from dating and marrying non-Mennonites and a member of another Mennonite community.

Though, at present, only conservative Mennonites forbid marriage between a Mennonite and a non-Mennonite.


Amish people are generally kind and friendly. You may interact with them when you buy their products.

However, if you are a non-Amish, and you are interested to date one, it is highly unlikely that the both of you can have a relationship.

Amish people are generally conservative and prefer marriages only within their community. Mennonites and Amish people have similarities and differences in their core beliefs that marriage between these two parties is highly unlikely.

Can the Amish Drink Beer? Are They Allowed to Drink Alcohol?

Friday, March 17th, 2023

Like many religious groups, the Amish have unique beliefs and practices in which several reasonable factors and bible verses back up each rule. While one may think that since Jesus drank wine based on various bible stories, drinking alcohol is probably okay for them – or is that not the case? Can Amish drink beer?

The Amish people generally do not drink alcohol, including beer and hard liquor, as they view it as a worldly temptation that can lead to drunkenness and other harmful behavior. However, there may be variations in beliefs and practices between different communities and families.

In this article, we delve into the cultural and religious beliefs of the Amish and explore the answer to the age-old question: Can Amish drink beer?

The Amish Community on Drinking Alcohol

Most Amish churches adhere to strict religious beliefs prohibiting the Amish people from drinking alcohol, as they view it as a form of temptation that can lead to sinful behavior.

However, rules on drinking alcohol and other vices can vary among different Amish communities and individuals.

Can Amish drink alcohol in general?

Some Amish drink alcohol in moderation, while others may abstain completely. Some Amish people drink alcohol for medicinal purposes, like homemade dandelion wine, while others may prohibit it altogether.

The Amish person’s choice of drinking alcohol or not roughly depends on several factors – the group they belong to, the purpose behind it, or the Rumspringa, the period in their youth life when they can do whatever they want to test the waters outside their Amish country. 

Can the Amish kids drink alcohol on Rumspringa?

Rumspringa is a period in Amish culture when Amish young people are allowed greater freedom to explore the world outside of their community and decide whether to remain within the Amish faith or to leave it.

It is often portrayed in popular culture as when Amish youth engage in activities such as drinking, partying, and other “wild behavior.”

While it is true that some Amish youth may choose to use tobacco or drink alcohol during Rumspringa, this is not a universal practice and is not condoned nor encouraged by the Amish church.

The Amish do not view Rumspringa as a time to rebel against their beliefs but rather as a time for young Amish kids to decide whether they wish to remain in the Amish faith or to leave it.

Furthermore, Rumspringa is not a defined period, and its length and activities can vary widely among different Amish communities and families.

Some communities may place more restrictions on the young people during this time, while others may allow more freedom.

Ultimately, the decision to drink alcohol or use tobacco during Rumspringa, or to engage in any other behavior, is left up to the individual and their family.

Do Amish people give up alcohol drinking when they join the church?

When an Amish teenager joins the church, they publicly declare their faith and commitment to the Amish way of life.

This declaration includes pledging to follow the Ordnung, a set of religious and church rules that govern all aspects of Amish life, including dress, behavior, and interaction with the outside world.

Abstaining from alcohol use is one of the expectations outlined in the Ordnung, and Amish individuals are expected to uphold this expectation throughout their lives as Amish community members.

Alcohol Consumption Rules for Old and New Order Amish

The Old Order Amish and New Order Amish are subgroups of the Amish community.

While both groups share many similarities, some significant differences exist, like their use of technology, plain clothing or brighter colored fabrics, church structure and organization, community/family life structure, and alcohol use.

Old Order Amish and Alcohol

The Old Order Amish, considered the original division, is the more prominent sect of the Amish religious group. They are the largest population-wise.

In general, Old Order groups allow alcohol use in moderation. Since it was mentioned in the bible countless times, they don’t see any reason to prohibit it entirely.

Some Old Order Amish people even make beers, ciders, and wines in their homes or barns. Unlike many English folks, however, most Old Order Amish drink alcohol on special occasions, such as celebrating weddings.

No Old Order Amish member can be seen drinking alcohol in public places such as bars. They usually drink alcohol privately, like inside their homes, to avoid judgment due to the social stigma attached to alcohol use.

New Order Amish and Alcohol

The New Order Amish, with the largest population residing in Holmes County, strictly prohibit alcohol.

Even for medicinal purposes, alcohol use is still up for debate in many, if not all, New Order Amish groups.

The New Order Amish churches may be more relaxed regarding their congregation’s use of modern technology and plane travels.

However, they are stricter on things that can be dangerous to the body, such as alcohol and tobacco use.

Since the New Order Amish adults are more focused on spreading their faith and participating in missions, they always see that standing as the more conservative Amish group would appeal more positively to potential converts. 

The New Order Amish church leaders strongly emphasize community and family values and prioritize their members’ well-being and spiritual health.

Hence, any behaviors or practices viewed as harmful or disruptive to the health and society are strictly forbidden and highly discouraged, even if they are not explicitly mentioned in the Ordnung or other guidelines.

True Stories of Amish Men and Alcohol

There’s a report from NBC News that in September 2019, Trumbull County sheriff’s deputies saw an Amish man and an underaged Amish teen drinking beer while riding in the back of a horse and buggy.

According to the article, they quickly ran off when the cops pulled them over.

After searching the buggy, they found multiple open alcohol containers. According to the 17-year-old, one of the two Amish men who ran off, they were heading to a party the night the police officers pulled them over.

Since he had drunk ten or eleven beers and was still considered a minor, he knew he would get into big trouble.

However, compared to English communities, alcohol abuse in the Old Order Amish communities is less common.

Everyone believes that the Amish’s strong faith and religious ties may help them find the support they need once they resort to alcohol abuse.

One great example is Moses, an Amish person who got sober in 1947 with the help of Alcoholics Anonymous.

Excessive Drinking According to the Bible

The Bible does not condemn drinking alcohol, but it does warn against the dangers of excess and encourages Christians, including the Amish, to drink in moderation and consider how their actions may impact others.

The following are some key passages from the Bible:


Generally speaking, the entirety of the Amish religious group has no unified hard-bound specific rule on the Amish’s alcohol use.

When talking about the consumption of alcohol, the Old Order Amish sees nothing wrong with allowing alcohol since Jesus did it according to the bible.

However, since the bible warns against excessive drinking, the Old Order Amish members know the limitations.

The New Order Amish, who already drew a hard line between them and alcohol, considers any form of alcoholic drink a harmful substance that endangers the drinker’s well-being.

They also see it as something that may corrupt them and threaten their religious standing and beliefs. 

While both points are reasonable, it’s an important factor to consider that the decision to drink alcohol or not is all up to each Amish person and to which community he belongs. 

Can Amish Get Tattoos? Are They Even Allowed To Get One?

Friday, March 10th, 2023

The Amish community is known for its distinct way of life, rejecting many aspects of modern society and embracing a simpler, more traditional way of living. But what about body art? Can Amish individuals express themselves through tattoos, or is this practice considered too modern and secular for their beliefs?

The Amish people’s literal understanding of the bible forbids them to get tattoos. As Leviticus 19:28 says, “Do not cut your bodies for the dead, and do not mark your skin with tattoos. I am the Lord.” Furthermore, Amish society considers these as vanity and worldly, which are highly prohibited in the Amish culture.

In this article, we will explore the world of Amish tattoos, examining their religious and cultural significance and uncovering the surprising truth behind this controversial topic.

Amish Community Versus Vanity and Worldliness


When one thinks about the Amish culture, the first thing that comes into mind is their plainness and modesty. They believe that living a simple life is what God teaches in the bible.

Since all Amish communities generally take the holy book word for word, they have avoided everything related to vanity.

Amish people are forbidden to wear clothes with decorations such as buttons, Amish women cannot wear makeup nor have their hair cut and show it to the public, Amish men can’t grow mustaches nor shave their beards after marrying, and Amish children play with faceless and fingerless dolls.

In addition, the Amish church considers things such as tattoos, cosmetics, piercings, and earrings vain and worldly. Therefore, seeing an Amish person wearing or having any of these things would be impossible.

The Amish strongly believe that worldliness or getting influenced by worldly things would cause them to get absorbed by the modern world, create envy among others, and detach themselves from their faith.

In terms of Amish beliefs, these would compromise the longstanding Amish way of life and keep them from being close to God.

What Do Amish People Think of Tattoos?


Looking closely at all Amish communities worldwide, each group lives a strict Godly life. Unlike the society most of us live in, the Amish church has been taking extra precautions from the start to prevent Amish community members from having access to possible temptations that may cause them to commit sins.

Since getting inked is a sign of vanity, a part of the modern world, and is mentioned in the holy book, it is seen as one of the biggest sins an Amish person can commit. Even the idea of having one is frowned upon within any Amish community. Therefore, getting one is strictly forbidden.

Moreover, all Amish community members are taught as part of their religious teachings that the human body is a temple of God. Therefore, it shouldn’t be marked with anything, especially something permanent.

Most of them with a more conservative Amish faith would say that having a permanent ink on your body can be equivalent to self-mutilation and rebellion against God.

Can You Become Amish if You Have Tattoos?


In today’s modern world, getting inked is no longer a big issue for many of us compared to the last century. Due to society being more open, less discriminating, and less conservative, men and women get ink for personal reasons and self-expression.

Most don’t try to hide them anymore. You’ll see people from all walks of life walking around with inks on their arms, legs, and even necks and faces.

The answer can be complicated if a person has ink and want to become Amish. In general, tattooed people are not allowed, especially in conservative Amish groups like the Swartzentruber Amish, Schwartz Amish, Nebraskan Amish, etc.

The Old Order Amish, on the other hand, are known to be more friendly to outsiders. They commonly reside in Pennsylvania, Ohio, and many other parts of the United States and Canada.

If an inked person is serious about converting to Amish, he can try the less conservative and more modernized Amish groups. A certain group living in Holmes County, Ohio, the New Order Amish, are known to be the most progressive Amish.

Some of the subgroups under New Order Amish reportedly have electricity. Additionally, they speak English during their church services when no Pennsylvania Dutch speakers are present.

Bearing permanent ink on the skin would require the joiner to take a few extra steps because even though there are many Amish subgroups, some may live differently from others when adapting to modern conveniences.

They still have a common center, especially when discussing the Amish faith, since they all belong to one well-established religious group. 

Ways to Become Amish if a Person Has Tattoos


Over the years, many outsiders who are used to the modern American culture have attempted to become Amish for many reasons. Some have liked their new life of becoming one with the well-known plain people, while others have decided they couldn’t handle it.

According to scholars Donald Kraybill, Karen M. Johnson-Weiner, and Steven Nolt, in their book “The Amish,” released in 2013, only 75 people have successfully become Amish and have stayed since 1950.

Anyone who has permanent tats and is serious about joining the simple life of the Amish must do the following:

Repent for Getting Tattoos


Since the Amish consider this type of body art a sin, repentance is the first step to forgiveness. For the Amish, repenting for sins makes it possible for sinners to grow and develop spiritually and get closer to God again.

Have the Tattoo Covered at All Times


If the ink can be concealed with clothing, the interested joiner must always cover it. Under any circumstances, the mark on the skin shouldn’t be seen by anyone.

Get the Tattoos Removed


If the tattoo can not be covered by any means possible, the only chance is to remove it permanently. Thanks to modern technologies, anyone can now get rid of permanent tattoos in four ways:

  • Plastic surgery
  • Laser tattoo removal
  • Removal cream
  • Salt scrubs

What’s Next?

If the interested joiner gets accepted by the Amish successfully, there are more steps to take. There are instruction classes and tons of consistent church services to attend. He must learn the Amish languages – Pennsylvania Dutch and German.


He would also have to commit to all Amish rules and give up every worldly thing he has. Lastly, he’ll have to put his best foot forward as the congregation would closely observe to see if becoming Amish and living a Godly life would suit him well.

If he fails but is still interested in becoming a part of the Amish community, he may start by reading a few books and living like the Amish way for as long as he can.

Some Amish families living in less conservative Amish communities may accommodate outsiders in their homes for months or even a year so that they can experience what it takes to become Amish.

What if an Active Member of the Amish Church Gets a Tattoo?

The Amish people are also humans. Humans, by nature, are not perfect. Even though no information is available on any active Amish community member getting tattooed, we can only assume a few possible scenarios based on their longstanding rules and traditions.

Rumspringa, a period, where Amish youngsters who just turned 16 have the chance to discover the life outside Amish society. | Photo: moranfamilyofbrands

In the Amish culture, there’s a period called the Rumspringa that lasts almost two years, where an Amish youth who just turned 16 will be given a chance to explore what’s outside the Amish society.

During this period, Amish rules would not apply to him, so he could do whatever he wanted, like wear modern clothing, start a relationship with a non-Amish girl, drink alcohol, or get tattooed. All this while maintaining contact with his Amish family.

If this Amish youth decided to return and get baptized by the Amish church, he would have to do something about his ink. The baptism would be put on hold until he repents and removes the marking from his skin permanently. After his repentance, he would have to meet with their church officials to decide his fate.

Shunning is the most well-known form of punishment in Amish society. If an active member of the Amish community decided to break the rule and get inked, he would most likely be shunned.

The offender would be separated from the community to make them realize their sins – cutting off all social interactions, even with people living in their own homes, Amish families, friends, business partners, co-workers, etc.

To get back, the shunned member should remove the ink and repent for his sins. The decision to forgive him would be up to the church.


The Amish way of life is committing to every word from God. For all Amish community members, these strict rules help them escape temptations and sins that may cause possible detachment from their church, community, and faith.

As people would always say, avoiding temptations is more effortless than resisting. The Amish have already established this by taking vanity and worldliness off their menu.

By the Amish dressing modestly, not wearing any jewelry, and avoiding tattoos, they are confident they’re on the right track to keeping themselves close to God all the time.

Do Amish Accept Blood Transfusions?

Friday, February 17th, 2023

The Amish community has long been known for their distinctive way of life, adhering to traditional practices and shunning modern technology. But what about when it comes to matters of life and death? Do the Amish accept blood transfusions, a medical procedure that can mean the difference between life and death?

Amish may accept blood transfusions as there’s nothing in their beliefs and understanding of the bible that tells otherwise. They are likely to give their consent if they know that it’s for the benefit of the recipient.

In this brief exploration, we will delve into the Amish beliefs and practices surrounding medical treatments and examine their stance on this crucial issue.

The Amish Beliefs and Blood Transfusions

The Amish Beliefs and Blood Transfusions

Blood transfusion is one of the most vital medical procedures today. It’s typically done when the body loses a lot of blood from injury or surgery. Compared with chemotherapy and surgery, it’s a less complicated life-saving medical treatment.

Some medical conditions and illnesses, such as kidney failure and leukemia, may require blood transfusions too. Without it, death may occur.

Now, do Amish accept blood transfusions?

The Amish people actually allow it. They are willing to either be the donor or the recipient if the situation requires it. They will never hesitate to respond when they know that a fellow Amish member is in crisis or a human body is suffering from a life-threatening illness.

The Amish as Faithful Blood Donors

The life-giving benefits of blood transfusions can be related to how the bible mentions blood every time a covenant is made. Since the Amish lifestyle and beliefs are fueled by how they almost literally interpret every word of the bible, it is understandable how they value blood and how it saves lives. For them, the “gift of blood” is a “gift of life.”

If the power of the blood could save tons of children in Israel in Exodus 12:22, could allow the high priest to approach the presence of God without getting struck dead in Leviticus 16:13-14, and could make people enter the holiest place in the temple in Hebrews 9:13-14; what more could blood do today especially in saving human life?

In the Amish culture, everyone lives according to their religious beliefs. There was the blood of the lamb that saved the firstborn children in ancient Israel, and there was the blood of Christ who saved everyone from sins. Undoubtedly, blood has been saving human lives since the beginning of time and continues to do so.

Contrary to what some people believe, the Amish know the essence of using modern medical services, including surgery, hospitalization, dental work, anesthesia, blood transfusions, etc., in saving human lives. Considering the Amish understanding of the bible, they will likely give their consent if they know that it’ll be good for their fellow Amish.

Can Amish Donate Organs?

For the Amish, the decision to donate an organ or tissue is up to them. Whether organ donors, tissue donors, or none of the above, their final say is and will never be affected by any religious law.

Every faithful Christian knows that a simple organ donation saves lives because the Christian Church encourages organ donation and other selfless ways to help neighbors.

As their teaching says, we were all created for God’s glory and to share our blessings. The Bible also says, “God has placed you in your neighborhood for a reason, and as Christians, we are called to love our neighbors as ourselves ” (Matthew 22:37-39).”

Since the Amish are Christians and read the same bible, they follow these teachings and apply them to their daily lives. 

Can Amish People Get Organ Transplants?

Can Amish People Get Organ Transplants?

The Amish Religion doesn’t forbid their congregation to seek the help of modern healthcare services and licensed medical personnel, especially when their health is at risk. At the same time, they believe people must live purely and free from external influences. 

With that, an Amish transplant recipient will only agree or request organ donation or surgery if he or she is convinced that these options are the best for his or her own body and survival.

Although organ transplant is permitted, there is one exception – the heart. Only unbaptized Amish children with heart problems can have heart transplants after birth. Since heart disease rates are higher in the Amish, this could probably be an issue if not for their strong religious beliefs.

Are There Many Amish Organ and Tissue Donors?

The Amish people fully support organ and tissue donation. They see it as the deceased’s final act of generosity to save someone else’s life. However, due to the delay and disruptions in the Amish death traditions caused by the program, the Amish rarely agree to donate.

According to a funeral director serving the Amish in Lancaster County for almost seven decades, he has seen precisely two who proceeded to donate organs out of approximately 1,500 approved organ donors reviewed by the organization. He has also experienced his fair share of emotional Amish families venting out due to the delays.

Live Amish donors will not hesitate to give for kidney or part of liver donations if they know that it is the only way to help the transplant recipient. If the outcome is uncertain, it’s not uncommon for them to feel reluctant or even oppose donation.


Like the rest of us, the Amish value how important these life-saving treatments and modern medical services, such as blood transfusion and organ donations, are. Their generosity can extend up to this level. However, unlike the people outside their grid, they live by simplicity and centuries-old traditions derived from the bible that already define who they are.

The Amish life’s cornerstone is faith. They treat daily life as a spiritual activity. Therefore, nothing in this world could change how they usually do things inside their communities. If it comes to choosing between something written more precisely in the bible and something that is not, the first one will always be their choice.

What Is An Amish Barn Raising? The Process and Preparations

Sunday, January 22nd, 2023

Amish men and women are all known to be among the most hardworking and helpful people in their community in the world. These exceptional Amish values are often seen in their joint cooperative work projects, such as the well-known Amish Barn Raising.

An Amish barn raising is a significant Amish community event where all Amish able-bodied men cooperate to build a new barn or other structures like houses, farms, or schools.

Below is a closer look at this Amish tradition.

More About The Amish Barn Raising


Since the early age of the Amish religious group hundreds of years ago, their church leaders have taught each one of them the practice of “mutual aid.”

In this system, the Amish people work hand in hand to accomplish a task that would benefit everyone in their community. They also believe that they are responsible for the welfare of their fellow Amish church members.

In a traditional Amish Barn Raising, community members provide free manual labor to one of their fellow members should they wish to build a barn or any structure, with an understanding that the favor will be returned someday.

The most practical goal of this tradition is to strengthen the bond and camaraderie among the Amish people within the community. Everyone is encouraged to help since barn raisings are their chance to socialize and maintain a good relationship with each one of the volunteers. Sometimes, they get to meet their schoolmates during the event and build new friendships.

It is important to note that barns are significant to all Amish communities because they hold their church services and other community events in members’ barns. They have no literal churches like other religious groups. Therefore, the Amish people treat each barn like most people who are non-Amish treat their churches, temples, and other religious structures.

Why Is It Called A Barn Raising?

Historically, “barn raising” describes a collaborative action of many people from a neighborhood or community gathering together to raise a barn literally. While the men worked, the women were in charge of feeding them. It was a traditional community event that no one should miss.

Even though building methods had already changed for almost the whole world, the Amish have maintained the traditional style of raising barns.

In times when there are no new barns to raise in these Amish communities, there are lots of farm projects or rebuilding of houses from the ground up in cases of disaster that require everyone’s help and cooperation.

What Happens At A Barn Raising?

Generally, participation in barn raising is mandatory. Every man should participate. Older men who had joined many barn raisings for the past years are designated chief crews. Failure to attend may result in censuring within the community.


On the barn-raising day, 100 to 150 Amish men arrive early. The organizer or hired engineer oversees the entire project and gives detailed instructions to the men. The Amish women prepare and bring the food for lunch and afternoon break in a potluck and huge all-you-can-eat buffet setting.

The Amish have no diet restrictions, as they believe they need more carbohydrates due to their heavy daily workload. The food served at their barn raisings usually consists of bread loaves, butter, potatoes, beef roasters, chicken, pies, vegetables, etc.

Amish children also participate in the event. Some help with the occasional carrying of light materials needed for the construction, and some help their mothers prepare the meals for everyone. You may also see small children running and playing around.

The Amish barn raising is like a massive event for all Amish; this is why everyone is expected to participate, and even a few outsiders can pay a good visit to watch and learn from the whole building experience.

Most of the time, large communal dinners with ciders are waiting for all participants at the end of the day.

How Long Does An Amish Barn Raising Take?

Contrary to outsiders’ belief that the Amish custom of barn building can be done in one day since almost all able-bodied members of the Amish community are helping, the barn construction and final finishes may take a week or two.

The whole process of building barns is more challenging than we see in pictures or read online – especially for the Amish, who never rely on machines, materials, and methods developed by modern society.

The wood frame, however, takes up a single day to lay. But before that iconic step, the workers must first work on the clearing and foundation a day before. Since hundreds of hands are working, the barn’s entire frame is expected to be put in place by the end of the barn-raising day.

The enclosing – roof, exterior walls, paints, and other finishing steps may take a week or more, depending on the structure’s overall size.

Who Pays for It?

In a regular barn raising, the Amish family who owns the property usually pays for the supplies. They may also hire engineers who foresee the whole plan and process. They are also responsible for ensuring the materials needed are accessible and available.

Suppose a disaster is the cause of the building or repair, and the family can’t afford anything. In that case, the Amish church and its members may donate lumber, materials, and some domesticated farm animals.

Since they never delay extending their hands to the needy, homelessness and starvation don’t exist among Amish families in any of their communities.

The labor cost is always free in an Amish barn raising. The volunteers usually bring their tools.

Amish Barn Raising: The Preparations


Before an actual barn raising, the owner, or organizers will do all the planning and preparations. The Amish will usually collaborate ahead of time to see what resources and materials everyone can contribute. This will also give them enough time to trim all the lumber and clear the ground site according to plan.

The cellar and foundation will be laid first. This is done a day before or on the morning of the barn raising, so the workers can spend the day assembling and putting up the frame. If the structure is huge, the roof, walls, enclosures, and paints will be done in the next few days or even weeks.


Barn raisings are not exclusive to the Amish. There are lots of countries and cultures that used to do this tradition. Due to a lack of resources in the early centuries, people would always automatically gather to help neighbors and those in need.

Others may have a different name or a different setup, but all barn raisings have one goal: to help each other and promote camaraderie. However, many have abandoned this tradition since technology has already provided the “extra hands” the old civilizations lacked.

Since the perks of modern times haven’t touched the entire Amish community yet, the Amish Barn Raising has remained one of their most important events.

Additionally, their Amish belief in aiding others has preserved this tradition for eternity. Despite the heavy work, everyone can expect that the Amish Barn Raising will always be there to stay.