The Amish Church, which began more than 300 hundred years ago in Europe, is a spinoff of the Anabaptist Christians. This group organized into a separate branch of Protestantism at the end of the 17th century under the leadership of a Swiss Mennonite preacher from Berne named Jakob Ammann. Ammann urged his followers to live according to the practices of the early church and to reject modern European society. Ammann drew followers from throughout Europe, who eventually journeyed to the United States to escape religious persecution. The first large migration of Amish immigrated to Pennsylvania in the 1730’s, and to this day, the largest concentration of Amish can still be found there, although Amish communities can now be found in twenty-eight other states, as well as in Canada. In the 18th century, only about 500 hundred Amish arrived in Pennsylvania; 3,000 more came by the end of 19th century (Prothero 1). Currently, approximately 228,000 Amish live throughout the United States, primarily in Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Indiana (Prothero 1).
Traditionally, the Amish lived on farms and traveled by horse and buggy. They continue to dress in simple homemade clothing, use German in their religious services, and choose to provide for their elderly on their own without benefit of Social Security. In addition, they survive without electricity and do not own telephones or cars. They do not vote or serve in the military; however, they do pay taxes. Women are limited to working in the home and not allowed to use birth control. The Amish insist on marrying within their faith and do not allow divorce. They do not send their children to public school beyond the elementary level, believing that school is only practica...
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English Standard Version. Bible Gateway. Web. 25 Oct. 2012. Peterson, Eugene H. The Message. Bible Gateway. Web. 11 Mar. 2014.
"Introduction: The Amish." PBS. Website ©1996-2013 WGBH Educational Foundation., n.d. Web. 9 Mar. 2014.
Miller, Wayne F. “Negotiating With Modernity: Amish Dispute Resolution.” Ohio State Journal On Dispute Resoultion 22.2 (2007): 477-526. Academic Search Complete. Wed. 20 Feb 2014.
Prothero, Stephen R. and Queen II, Edward L. "Amish." In Queen, Edward L., II, Stephen R. Prothero, and Gardiner H. Shattuck Jr., eds. Encyclopedia of American Religious History, Third Edition. New York: Facts On File, Inc., 2009. American History Online. Facts On File, Inc. Web.
Waxman, Olivia B. "Breaking Amish: One Ex-Follower’s True Story of Moving to the Big Apple." Time. © 2014 Time Inc. All Rights Reserved., 9 Sept. 2012. Web. 11 Mar. 2014.
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