I’m slowly working on writing a post about being raised Amish Mennonite* and what it taught me. It’s been an interesting subject to think about, especially after five years of living outside an Amish Mennonite community. Spoiler alert: I’m still very Amish-y.
But writing is hard to get done these days, with a precious and fragile little girl in my arms. Added to all the normal mothering duties that keep me busy is the work of making this child feel safe and welcome.
I remind myself that caring for my family is more important than my writing, and this is a particularly challenging time. These life-changes are never easy. Every evening I go to bed with a weariness that seeps from every part of my body and soul.
So I’ll piddle along with my writing as I can, and I have a request for you: Will you breathe a prayer for our family and for our new little girl, as God brings it to mind?
Especially pray for us next weekend. Before our child came, I registered to attend Inspire, a women’s retreat in Indiana. I almost cancelled last week, but my soul needs renewal and fellowship. At this point, I’m planning to fly so that I will only have to be gone one night. Pray that our little girl can handle me being gone.
I know that a healthy parent is a better parent, and that Will will take excellent care of her, but it’s still hard to leave for two days!
(And if you happen to be at Inspire and are one of my blog readers, please come say hi! I’d love to meet you!)
What things do you especially enjoy doing, and how do you set them aside for a season?
*At first I wrote “Mennonite,” until my dear uncle corrected me. Dear me, so many stripes and strands and flavors of people! Amish and Mennonite (while there are some real differences between the two) both fall under the “Anabaptist” grouping. Maybe that would be a better identifying term to use.
17 thoughts on “Writing, and better things”
Rosina dear, Teresa and Monica are attending Inspire. Monica has a booth.
Question/Comment: I’m surprised you indicate you were raised Mennonite. From the manner of thought, doing and actions you were raised as an Amish person and not Mennonite. This is from a Historically study and personal observation and experience. When I married Dolores I had the same persuasion as you indicated because of comparing the Amish in Hutchinson. However, did I ever discover a difference. Dolores’s background and family is 100% pure Mennonite. She is 9th generation descendent if Hans Herr, the first Mennonite in Lancaster county. Just as you’ve discovered in your wonderful move out of the Hutch Amish community, you’ve discovered a different way that the ML culture looks and processes life and Christianity. That illustrates the same difference from Amish and Mennonite thought and processes. I had to come to the place to accept my “Amishness” but my Uncle Paul helped me understand the huge difference. Soo this is just a gentle correction in your writings for a better betrayal to your audience. Thanks for allowing me the freedom to speak up.!
Blessings galore, Uncle Loren Miller, DPM
Thank you, Uncle Loren! I’ll change that to “Amish Mennonite.” 😊 I think maybe there are differences yet between those who left the Amish and those who didn’t? This would be an interesting discussion to have.
People around here think I’m German Baptist, which makes me laugh, not because I don’t love my GB friends! But Amish, Mennonites, Holdeman Mennonites, and German Baptists are all the same to them. They don’t see the nuances at all.
I wonder if “Anabaptist” would be a more accurate term that could encompass all of these groups.
I look forward to the article. And, unlike your Uncle Loren, I was raised Mennonite and married into an Amish background family. An interesting switch for me.
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What are some of the things you’ve noticed, Luci? And congratulations on your marriage!
Maybe the Amish background is gentler, less verbally opinionated than Mennonites? Or is that just this family? This is new to me so still trying to figure it out. Thank you. 🙂
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I’ve done the same. My opinion would be that it is differences in families/communities rather than church affiliation as a whole. I’ve found the Amish Mennonites to be quite a bit more verbally opinionated, less flexible with accepting different ways of doing things. But I’m sure that can vary widely.
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Thanks for that insight. I didn’t know. The Dutch is obvious, but everything else is a little harder to put a finger on. 🙂 I read an article yesterday that helped me verbalize that elusive quality I didn’t quite know how to describe. The article was talking comparing native German to Pennsylvania Duetsch and how both people groups share a quality I would call “understatement.” For instance, they don’t normally say they love their children…that word in German is considered too sacred to use lightly… instead they say they like their children. Instead of saying it’s hot outside, they say “It’s pretty warm out today.” Instead of saying they will do something, they might ask “do you figure on doing this?” “Well, that’s the plan.”
Reminded me so much of Ivan! He always (in my words) understates everything. 🙂 Like some bars he particularly liked, instead of saying “l love these bars,” or “these are really good,” he said “these are quite fit.” Lol.
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I’ve noticed the understatement, too, although in different ways than you described here. 😊
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Please change my email address to email@example.com and delete the firstname.lastname@example.org address. Thank you!Betty
There are differences, between Amish and Mennonite, I mean…but like many of the people that you brush shoulders with in your community now, I do not think the differences are big enough to quibble about. The roots are the same. The centuries of psychological realities are much the same. Those inside see these differences as monumental and at times insurmountable, but for those of us looking on from the outside, it is like minute shade differences of the same colour. In some lights you can almost see a difference, but most of the time the eye registers it as different swathes of the same colour. Those of you inside will just have to take our word for it – but perhaps Amish and Mennonites of different stripes have so developed their eyesight on the particulars of certain things, that they can see things that we cannot — I will grant that possibility. But it begs the question: do those minute differences matter? especially if only those inside can actually see them?
Thank you, Tamar. That is certainly the impression I’ve gotten after mixing with a different group of people. I find myself losing some of that finer insight–different groups look more and more the same to me, too. I wonder why we’ve wasted so much time hammering out the details.
The post I’m writing is fairly general so I think it will apply to any conservative Mennonite or Amish group.
Interesting comment, Cheryl, because in my experience, Mennonites are the more black and white thinkers…while
the Beachy people tend to be more open-minded.☺️ But I’m sure that can vary too.
Do you think we will ever be able to figure this out? 😃 I’m trying to keep my post general enough that it will apply to a variety of Anabaptist groups.
This conversation is very interesting and makes me grin. You could probably write a blog post based on just this!
I know, right?! 😃
Or maybe you could say you were raised ‘Beachy Amish’ which I think (but I might be wrong)is more technically correct than ‘Amish Mennonite’. ☺️ Stripes and strands, yes. You made me smile.😊