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The Amish Voice 12

Non Profit Org.



Ashland, Ohio

Permit No. 188

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Katie lingered longer than she planned

to in the Cedar Lake Country Store. Many

attractions lined the shelves from dishes to

quilts, but the dry goods really grabbed her

attention. She longingly looked at some of

the lighter and brighter colors and couldn’t

resist stroking her fingers across a deep

lavender one.

“It’s been a long time since I’ve had a

good Sunday dress,” Katie whispered to

herself more than to Mattie Yoder who was

tending the store. She brushed her work-

worn hand over her faded brown apron.

Katie Burkholder was the oldest of

eight children. She came of age a year ear-

lier when she turned twenty-one. Since

then, the pint-sized brunette worked as a

maud (maid) for various families in her

Amish church district. Though she only

stood five feet tall, her dedication to com-

plete a task and devotion to the woman she

worked for more than made up for her

small frame.

Katie’s lingering minutes triggered the

question as to what made a color worldly,

or what was a truly humble color. “Is

worldliness the color of a piece of material,

or is it a heart condition?” Katie wondered.

“Who defines worldliness? Who can

tell if this deep lavender is worldlier than

Emma Troyer’s black that she always

wears?” Katie’s puzzling questions finally

spilled out of her mouth, “Why would

someone think that I am being worldly if I

were to buy this lavender material? It

would wash well with little ironing. What

makes it worldly?”

Mattie moved closer and replied quiet-

ly, “I think it’s just about our church rules;

you know the ordinances we’ve always

had. Bishop Bieler may think that you are

proud; you know we have to be dahmutic


“But how can Bishop Bieler know

what’s in my heart?”

“You know you’d be safe if you chose

this dark blue or this deep pine green, and

the church leaders wouldn’t consider you

to be rebellious.”

“Ach! I wish I knew if the church el-

ders are always right. I know we’re not

encouraged to study the Bible on our own

because we may be deceived, but I do read

my New Testament sometimes. When I do,

something inside of me feels more satis-

fied, but another part of me is disturbed.

Katie Finds a Resolution

an ongoing series of short stories

— Lydia Chorpening

—continued on page 10—