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Another Amish Fuel Story

I've said before that journalists just find the angle of "Amish being squeezed by rising fuel" prices irresistable, for whatever reason.  Maybe the first time the story was written, it was interesting.  But c'mon, there really isn't anything new here.  That said, this story appeared today in the Wilmington, Delaware paper.  This article gives a good glimpse into the very old Amish settlements in that small state.  So all in all the article - despite it's beaten to death topic - is a good read.  And while we're on the topic, the price of oil has plunged over $11 per barrel over the past few days, so we may see prices at the pump begin to pull back over the days ahead if this trend keeps up.....

KJuneBug's picture
Re: Another Amish Fuel Story

Aren't those gas powered appliances, propane powered?  That would not attach the house the the natural gas grid, they would just have a propane tank outside the home? I think it is about finding ways to use what is useful without compromising the basic tennants of church doctrine.

About the comment on cohesiveness of the family... Lovina in her column today spoke of serveral different directions her family was headed on that particular day.  A cohesive family is possible without being Amish!! It just takes lots of coordinating of schedules and a commitment by the husband and wife to uphold that particular "family policy" (that's what we call the "rules" we live by that we have determined for our family, sort of like a missions statement or rules of operation) of course in compliance with the Bible, and God's standard for us as Christians.

We have several family policies, that we stick to, just like a business would. It really makes things a whole lot simpler. 

To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed. Titus 2:5

Re: Another Amish Fuel Story

VERY IMPORTANT:   I like to use some occasions on this website as "teaching moments."  SOME Amish do embrace gas-powered appliances, while others do not.  There is a wide, wide latitude among the Amish about which modern conveniences to accept or reject. Rarely is a broad-brush statement applicable to the Amish, there are just too many variations from church to church.  Heck, you might have one Amish church opposed to gas appliances but the church bordering accepts them....much discretion is given to the bishop to make such decisons.

LuvMaerz's picture
Re: Another Amish Fuel Story

"Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, but today is a gift... that's why they call it the present."

I guess it makes a little more sense to me after you explained it in the past, but I think it is that misunderstanding of the majority of the population that makes people view them as being hypocritical.  You said they do not use electrical items because then they would be "tied into the grid" so to speak... but don't gas appliances make them also dependent on the gas company as well?

 Did you ever find out how they charge their cell phones?  Wink

Re: Another Amish Fuel Story

So stupid question then, do the Amish have a tendency, like other religious people do, and change which church they go to base on what they do and don't accept?

dcharrison's picture
Re: Another Amish Fuel Story

Two books that I have read recently, that we also talked a bit about here a while ago - Tobias of the Amish & Emma, A Widow among the Amish talk about when some church splits happened here in the Hutchinson area. I found them both interesting - possibly because I realized that I know or know of a few of the people involved.  They are written by Ervin R. Stutzman and I have seen at least Emma at Walmart.  I ordered both from Amazon.  My boss borrowed Tobias and she said she found it slow going, but I think it is just a difference in the books we like to read.


Re: Another Amish Fuel Story

I didn't know that the Amish use gas power washing machines, leaves me puzzled....Undecided

Re: Another Amish Fuel Story

I think what most people don't realize is that the Amish do not view technology as in and of itself an evil, it is the convenience that modernity allows and the ability to separate the family that they are opposed to. Amish use cell phones and telephones for business purposes, but you won't find one in the house usually. The same thing goes for tape recorders or cd players. It is not that they do not like music, many plain folk enjoy good old fashioned hymn sings, it is just that if they allowed the technology, it might serve to fracture the family unit as it certainly does in our modern world. Of course,the Amish have not the slightest problem with hiring van drivers and going cross country. The difficulty they have is not with the car, per se, but with ownership of one and the lifestyle it engenders. The gas powered washing machine is one appliance that a certain Amish church district has deemed not in opposition with their beliefs. There are also communities that use gas powered milking machines. I think that  the use of these things is weighed by the district bishops and if the use does not entail compromising their values, and  is economically productive, then it is allowed. Everything that the very conservative members of both Amish and Mennonite faiths do is designed to retain the biblically ordered family unit and to promote the "gelassenheit"( yielded-ness) of Christian living. It is certainly a problem in our culture that everyone is off doing their own thing because of cars, and separate interests. The cohesion and the security of the family is unraveled subsequently. This is something the Amish seek to avoid. Susan Innocent

Re: Another Amish Fuel Story

Well said.  Crucial points...Many people believe the Amish view "technology" as evil and, as you say, that is just not's all the "baggage" that comes with the cell phones are actually MORE acceptable to the Amish than land-lines, because at least with a cell you can exercise control over the technology....a land-line could just ring anytime, interrupt supper, prayer, etc. A cell phone you can turn it off, throw it out the window, etc...the issue is much more about controlling and containing technology than eliminating it...

Re: Another Amish Fuel Story

Okay, BK, my reply is ABOVE your comment...I get tripped up by my own website sometimes!Smile

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