Their Amish community? Huh?
Last week, when I told a friend I was posting a blog on Saint Paddy’s Day, she asked about the Amish living in Ireland. I told her there weren’t any. But the idea niggled in my head.
I scanned Google, but knew not to accept what I stumbled upon as reliable. So I contacted noted professor and author, Donald B. Kraybill, the ultimate authority on Amish. He affirmed my statement. “There are NO Amish in Ireland,” he wrote. “We define Amish as horse and buggy driving. It’s possible that there are some Beachy Amish in Ireland. They are plain dressing, car driving folks who left the Amish in the early 20th century. But for many reasons are not Amish.”
According to one article I read, The Dunmore East congregation is part of the Beachy Amish Mennonite faction, which emerged in 1927 and is known for being more worldly than other Amish groups. Old Order Amish avoid most modern technology such as electricity and the Internet, but these Beachy Amish (what they call themselves) drive cars, live in modest contemporary homes and use phones. The church owns its own Website! In the photo of their church —Old Order Amish don’t worship in churches— it is surrounded by automobiles. Contradictions abound. But I don’t want to bore you to tears when you could be cooking Irish stew!
Why do you think the Irish are steeped in myths and folklore? What’s so special about clovers? Are you wearing green today so don’t get pinched? What’s your favorite Irish dish? Do you ever cook it at home?
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