Posts Tagged “amish schism”

Amish Buggy RideAs a follow-up to my most recent post, I’d like to offer another sterling example of Christianity in action (and Christians acting however they damn please, rather than obeying Jesusown teachings). This one comes from a Christian community which has a reputation for being non-violent, even pacifist, in nature. Time magazine’s Newsfeed blog reports some Amish castoffs appear to be assaulting other Amish over some sort of theological or ecclesiastical schism (WebCite cached article):

Amish families in Ohio have suffered a number of unwanted close shaves in recent weeks, after shunned members of the community devised a bizarre form of retaliation, the Associated Press reports.

The beard bandits have taken revenge by scalping the hair of a half-dozen or more men and women who ostracized them, as well as chopping off the males’ facial hair.

The intention behind such attacks is to humiliate the victims, since hair and beards are sacred among the Amish. (Many Christians, Jews and Muslims have such fetishes, perhaps inspired by the Nazirites of the Old Testament, the most famous of them being Samson.)

Authorities have been unable to do much about this spate of attacks, though, due to the beliefs of the Amish themselves:

Despite several victims suffering minor injuries, police have so far failed to charge anyone as they struggle to overcome the traditional “wall of silence” Amish communities adopt when dealing with the authorities.

“You see this crime being committed, and I’m sitting here with my hands tied,” said a frustrated [Jefferson County Sheriff Fred] Abdalla. “I can’t do a thing.”

Because of Amish silence, authorities also don’t really understand why the attacks are taking place, they only know it involves some sort of schism among some 18 Amish families.

You just know things must be really bad, if the usually-pacifist Amish are attacking one another.

Photo credit: puliarf via Flickr.

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