Mission to Amish People is a site dedicated to sharing information about ministries, services, testimonies, and opportunities to Amish and non-Amish (English) communities alike. There is a threefold purpose of Mission to Amish People. read more...
Feeling like ants in a cornfield, we meandered down the wide, needle-carpeted trails between the gigantic redwood trees at Jedidiah Smith State Park. Our six children, all adults now, scattered out ahead of us. One stopped to count rings on a log, another climbed up the roots of an enormous redwood to peek in a mysterious hole in the side, another marched far ahead and returned at a brisk pace, trying to tally as many steps as possible for the day.“Would you ever have imagined this, 33-and-a-half years ago?” my husband, Paul, asked me quietly as we lagged behind. We were taking a family post-Christmas vacation in the same area of the southern Oregon Coast where we had honeymooned, back in 1984, which caused much reminiscing, even for Paul, who looks forward more than back.
ST. CLAIRSVILLE, OH – A former Amish community member previously convicted of rape of a minor, is going to prison again for sex crimes involving two Amish girls.Jacob Weaver, 65, of Jerusalem appeared before Belmont County Common Pleas Judge John Vavra on Monday and was sentenced on two counts of gross sexual imposition, a felony of the fourth degree, and one count of attempted gross sexual imposition, a felony of the fifth degree. Vavra imposed a sentence of 17 months for the first two counts, to be served consecutively, and an 11-month concurrent sentence for the third count, for a total of 34 months.
Reuben Kauffman had seen his father cry only once.Then came Feb. 20, 2012, when Kauffman walked into the kitchen of his family’s Wisconsin farm home. His father sat at the dining table he helped build, reading a well-used Bible. A kerosene lamp dangled from the ceiling. Kauffman’s mother prepared scrambled eggs and homemade granola.The spartan kitchen was full of wonderful memories for Kauffman, one of nine children. The cinnamon rolls his mother made were treats that remain unmatched. The mashed potatoes and chicken were just as good.
ELKHART, IN — After visiting 450 Cracker Barrel Old Country Stores around the country during a 30-year span, Ray and Wilma Yoder decided it was time to set a goal of visiting all of the company's restaurants.Now, the Goshen couple is just one stop away from enjoying their favorite foods at all 645 Cracker Barrel locations in 44 states. In less than two weeks, on Aug. 26, they'll mark off the last location when they visit Tualatin, Oregon, a suburb of Portland. Company officials will send them to Portland to visit the nearby Tualatin Cracker Barrel location, as a way of thanking them for visiting the 644 sites.
Parents whose children are taken from them often fear that their children will forget them, especially if the children are very young when Child Protective Services steps in. However, there is a deep need inside human beings to know our biological parents, even if we don’t remember anything about them. There is something inside that longs to know where we came from and wants to connect with the truth.Elizabeth Byler of Pennsylvania is a mother of medically kidnapped children who has prayed that her children will not forget her. She also understands this longing from the perspective of the child, because she was raised in the Amish community by people who were not her parents.Since Elizabeth’s story broke on Health Impact News, there have been some interesting developments with regards to finding her biological father.
COLUMBIA, MO - Albert Lee had his right arm around Jack Howard’s throat. With his left arm, Lee secured his hold. He wrapped both legs around his sparring partner, ensuring Howard couldn’t get up from the mat.This is a normal Thursday night at the Hulett House, a Columbia gym operated by Rob Hulett, who has trained mixed martial arts fighters here for 20 years.
Thorndike, ME - With rain in the forecast, hay on the ground and high stakes in front of him, Kenneth Copp was racing the clock.The Thorndike furniture-maker and farmer was beginning to feel desperate about his chances of getting the first hay cutting inside his barn before the predicted rains came. His horses will eat hay from the bales all winter, and he can’t afford to purchase supplemental hay if his crop is lost to mildew and rot. So the wiry 57-year-old rolled up the sleeves of his thin cotton shirt, adjusted the turquoise sweat band beneath his straw hat and got to work on the huge task ahead of him — alone.
LANCASTER, PA - Forty years sounds like a lifetime. It also can fly past in the blink of an eye. Just ask the Rev. Sam Smucker. In 1977, Smucker and 30 other people gathered for worship in a room at the former Sheraton Conestoga Hotel on Oregon Pike. Three years later, they were renting space at the Lititz Rec Center for services.
Today, Smucker preaches to a weekly audience of 2,800 in an auditorium at the Worship Center — a 106,000-square-foot building along New Holland Pike complete with rooms, chapels and cafe. Adjacent is the first church building, now accommodating Lancaster County Christian School students in kindergarten through 12th grade.
On a recent morning, Smucker talked about how he, a former Amish youth from Ronks with only an eighth-grade education, became the pastor of a modern megachurch.
Learning about other religions and cultures will help create a better understanding among people. During the April 22 presentation of "A World of Faith and Cultures in our Neighborhood" at the Batesville Memorial Public Library, three individuals explained how their lives changed after following a different path. “Samuel Girod, the oldest of 13 children, was born into a Swiss Amish culture,” read Katherine Taul, Ripley County Tourism Bureau executive director.
“At the age of 30, he suddenly realized that he had everything an Amish man is allowed to have … (but) was very unhappy and depressed. In September 2012, he walked away from his two properties and half ownership in a construction company. With a duffel bag in each hand, Samuel traveled from Indiana to Ohio, where he met up with Joe Keim (a former Amish member who helps people who left this religion). For the next two days, the two of them discussed God’s plan of salvation. Finally, on day two, the Lord opened Samuel’s eyes and saved his soul.
DUBLIN, VA — Ammon “AJ” Miller’s journey of faith has taken him from the horse and buggy to a 2004 turbo diesel Volkswagen Jetta. The same journey led his twice-shunned family from an antiquated Amish village in Pennsylvania to their modern farm in Giles County. And now the 22-year-old is set on a path toward a previously unimaginable future — working with robotics. The fourth of seven children, AJ Miller will be the second in his family to earn a college degree. His brother Reuben Miller earned degrees from both NRCC and Radford University on his way to becoming a middle school math teacher and his sister Sarah Miller is currently enrolled at NRCC.
SUWANNEE COUNTY, FL - Jeremiah Raber is in trouble. Again. The man appears to be unable to stay out of trouble. The 37-year-old star of TLC's Return to Amish and former star of TLC's & Breaking Amish has been arrested for #Domestic Violence. The latest domestic violence charges were filed against him by his current wife, Carmela Raber. She accused Jeremiah Raber of throwing hot coffee on her lap. The alleged event happened during one of their many arguments.
NEW WILMINGTON, PA - A mother who is fighting the Child Protective Service system to get her children back was threatened during a mediation hearing last week. Elizabeth Byler of Pennsylvania, who grew up in an Amish community, appeared at the hearing last week. Elizabeth Byler of Pennsylvania, who grew up in an Amish community, appeared at the hearing without her lawyer present, due to her attorney’s scheduling conflict. Byler was allegedly given an ultimatum by court officials—to take down the Facebook page “or else,” they would “come after” her.
LANCASTER, PA - Daniel Stoltzfus, 43, and his wife Savilla Stoltzfus, 42, both of 10 Locust Lane in Quarryville, are accused of providing their then 14-year-old daughter to Lee Kaplan as part of a 2012 agreement.
Daniel Stoltzfus told police he "gifted" his daughter to Kaplan, 51, of 428 old Street Road, Feasterville, as a thank you for helping his family out of financial ruin.
University Park, PA - Amish upbringing influences Shenango graduate. Raised in an Amish community in Pennsylvania until the age of 23, Linda Byler, a 4.0 student who graduated from Penn State Shenango in December 2015, knew at a very young age that she would leave the old-order sect to pursue her dreams and live a life that included more than what limited options were available to her. “I really did not mind working in the fields,” said Byler. “Sure, it could sometimes be exhausting, but there is something very satisfying about working together as a team and accomplishing a difficult task.
ARTHUR, IL - Larry Schlabach, a former member of the Amish community turned pyrotechnic, spends all year preparing for it. A homemade cannon with bowling balls as ammunition gave Schlabach, his brothers and his cousins — all of whom were raised Amish — their start in pyrotechnics. Many members of the nearby Old Order Amish population — about 4,500 strong — sit atop the roofs of their sheds, barns and houses to watch the fireworks and flames.
CALGARY, CANADA - I was handed this book by its authors during my recent trip to Canada. They came from Montana to join me in Calgary and I had time to hear part of their story of moving out of the Amish culture and finding greater freedom in Christ. Plain Faith: A Story of Tragedy, Loss, and Leaving the Amish by Irene and Ora Jay Eash with Tricia Goyer, is a fascinating read about truth awakening in the human heart and that putting them in conflict with the religious tradition they grew up in.
MARYDEL, DE - Two individuals have been charged with burglarizing more than 20 Amish residences, garages, and sheds, Delaware State Police announced Friday. According to authorities, Harvey M. Coblentz, 26, formerly Amish himself, and his girlfriend, Peggy S. Wright, 31, both of Hartly, were immediately suspects in the thefts.
When Emma Gingerich left her Amish community in Eagleville, Missouri, she was 18 and had an eighth-grade education. She barely spoke English.The life that awaited most Amish women—one of cooking, cleaning, and child-rearing—never appealed to her. She wanted an education and the freedom to choose her own path.
Chet Beiler is worried about the direction of the country.The Lancaster County Republican is concerned that leaders in Washington are bankrupting America by shrinking the economic opportunity of its people and failing to keep the nation secure from threats abroad.Beiler thinks he can do better.
Indiana - A formerly Amish truck driver destroyed a historic bridge in Indiana because she flubbed the math on the weight of her big rig, police said.Mary Lambright, 23, drove a 30-ton tractor-trailer full of bottled water over the Paoli Bridge - a delicate iron span built in 1880 - at around noon on Christmas Day, causing it to collapse, according to the Herald Times.
Read MoreGrand Raids, Michigan - A former Amish farmer who joined his cancer-stricken brother in an elaborate Newaygo County marijuana grow operation that netted 860 marijuana plants and 780 pounds of harvested pot was sentenced to more than three years in federal prison, despite his attorney's plea for leniency.Moses Mast, a 40-year-old father of five, was sentenced to 37 months in prison for conspiring to grow marijuana.
Lagrange, Indiana - At a young age, Matthew Schwartz would hurry down the long driveway at his home when he heard sirens.Any emergency vehicle fascinated the Amish boy.Schwartz says his parents decided to leave the Amish community when he turned 13.
The Amish populate some parts of Michigan and many parts of the Hoosier State. Indiana is one of three states where the group primarily resides in the United States, according to the Young Center at Elizabethtown College in Pennsylvania. As a sect of Anabaptism, the Amish believe in voluntary adult baptism.Therefore, Amish youth have the choice whether or not to stay with the church. At the age of 16, youth will enter a coming-of-age period called Rumspringa. The Amish have an 85-90% retention rate, meaning most youth choose to stay with the church, despite continuous evolving pressure from the modern world.
Sugarcreek, Ohio - Andy Yoder is a bona fide doctor. Seven years after graduating from Goshen College in Goshen, Indiana, he has completed medical school and his residency at Ohio State University, and is working as a hospitalist at Aultman Hospital in CantonThere was never any doubt that Yoder would complete his goal of becoming a doctor, but the path that led him there was difficult.
Emma Gingerich said the past nine years have been the happiest she's been in her entire life. That's all because, she said, she's committed to her dream of abandoning her Amish community, where she felt she didn't belong, to pursue a college degree."I didn’t fit in," Gingerich of Texas told ABC News. "Other girls my age were a lot happier than me. For Amish women, they're very secluded and always kept in the dark."Gingerich, now 27, grew up one of 14 children in the small town of Eagleville, Missouri, where her parents sold produce and handmade woven baskets to passerby.
By 8 a.m. on a June day, the stables clustered around The Meadows racetrack, 25 miles south of Pittsburgh, are buzzing with activity. Standardbred horses pulling jogging carts — two-wheeled chariot-like contraptions with a seat for the driver — clip-clop back and forth between the stables and the track for their morning workouts. Veterinarians make their rounds, stable hands muck out stalls. Dozens of horses, vehicles and people are heading in every direction, with right-of-way always going to the horses, the stars of the show.
Albert Lee, 23, who was born Amish and has since left the community, spoke with KMZU’s Shaylee Miller about the charges of child abuse coming from the Bogard Amish community.
Albert Lee left the Amish community at the age of 15, after being mistreated his entire youth by an abusive father and an enabling mother. His father has since been convicted and incarcerated for his years of neglect to his children. Lee’s father, Andrew Lee, was arrested while living in Lamar, Missouri and currently remains incarcerated.
Marion, Ohio – Since she was 9 years old, Emma Lister had helped her mother, Sarah Schwartz, bake cookies, pies and breads in the kitchen of their home near Lancaster.Her father, Levi Schwartz, then would take their wares to roadside stands, farmers markets and flea markets, where they would be sold."A lot of it is Amish heritage," said Lister, who "grew up Amish" before leaving the community with her father and four of her sisters over differences about speaking to non-Amish people about the Bible.
As a young Amish girl in Bowling Green, Missouri, I had the joys of living on a farm and learning to work hard. I learned how to do many things at a very young age…...Milking cows, hanging out the laundry, hoeing the garden, caring for chickens, and walking to school… these were some of the things I did, and even enjoyed. We had no running water, no electricity, and we used “horse and buggy” for transportation. I must say I enjoyed a good life, in that respect.However, there was one subject that always concerned me. I remember looking up into the sky, and knowing that someday I would die.