“We Already Have”

I used to think the Amish were very strange people.  And then two things changed my mind – one is an Amish tradition; the other is an Amish tragedy.

Rumspringa is an Amish tradition more radical than any religious practice to which I’ve been exposed. When they’re around 15 or 16 years old, Amish kids are given a free pass to the outside world. They may smoke, drink, have sex, do drugs – pretty much anything non-Amish kids do. This is encouraged by elders so young people can make a critical decision in life: to be or not to be Amish.

What? Give teens with raging hormones a chance to run free and THEN decide if they want to be just plain Amish? But most Amish families have this kind of faith in their lives and, surprisingly, 4 out of 5 kids return to the fold. Hmmm…..

The second Amish fact kicked me harder still.

On October 16, 2006, Charles Roberts, a mentally-ill milkman from Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, burst into an Amish schoolhouse. He terrorized and tied up 11 young girls and shot each of them before killing himself. Many horrified parents arrived at the school within minutes. In anguish and confusion, they talked among themselves as the dead and dying were carried out of the small schoolhouse. And then a calm seemed to settle on the group.

A pushy TV reporter stuck a microphone into the face of a grieving father who had been told only moments before his own daughter was one of those murdered.

“Will you ever be able to forgive the killer?” the insensitive hack asked.

The father, who had tears streaming down his face, looked at the reporter, and smiled a gentle smile. His answer?

“We already have.”

5 Responses to ““We Already Have””

  1. Bill says:

    If I were a parent of one of those children I would have disjointed the s.o.b., poked out his eyes, squashed his testicles, and then skinned him alive. Slowly.

    I think it was Mark Twain who said forgiveness is the fragrance the rose leaves upon the boot that has crushed it.

  2. paolo. says:

    We’re not Amish.

  3. Joe Belle-Isle says:

    When the minister visits have your kids sit on your wife’s lap and hide the chickens and your wallet. I don’t trust any shitbird that thinks he can read the bible to me better than I can read it-espescially since most of them never read it, don’t know Jesus was jewish, and are just looking for a way to get rich without working and praying on your insecurities. And expect YOU to believe GOD called THEM. My numbers in the book. He can talk to me direct.

  4. Joe Belle-Isle says:

    And the AMISH in Fla have started using their name in promoting business-specificly majical heaters that don’t use much electricity. They don’t work either but cost about 5-8 times the price of one the same KW you cabn get in a drugstore.

  5. Joe Belle-Isle says:

    And ALL other religions have the same rite of passage-it’s called growing up.

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