What is the Difference Between Amish and Mennonites?

Both Mennonites and Amish belong to Christian organizations. They also went by the name of Anabaptists. Anabaptism has many different manifestations, like every religious movement, with the Amish and Mennonites being the two most well-known.

There are many different Mennonite groups today, some of which are highly liberal, and others are very conservative.

Everyone is loved by Mennonites and Amish alike. They have similar historical backgrounds and religious convictions. They share similar morals. The Amish and Mennonites are essentially the same people, except how they practice their Christianity.

The main visible difference between Amish and Mennonites is based on the idea of being cut off from the rest of the world. The Amish view this as having no physical connection, whereas the Mennonites see it as more of a moral issue.

Let’s first understand the definitions of Amish and Mennonites below:

Who is Amish?

Who Is Amish

A group of individuals known as the Amish hold to the beliefs of Jacob Ammann, a Swiss gentleman who lived in the 17th century. 

It belongs to the Protestant faith and is very similar to the Mennonites. The majority of the Amish reside in the United States, maintain basic customs and decline to take oaths or serve in the military.

The Anabaptist movement, which began in Europe in 1525 during the Reformation, gave rise to the Amish.

Jacob Almond formed the Amish in Germany because he thought the Mennonites, one of the earliest sects to emerge from the Anabaptist movement, were too liberal.

He chose a tougher, more regulated way of life, giving birth to the Amish, who started immigrating to America in the 1700s in search of religious freedom.

The Amish’s religious way of life is based on their commitment to Christianity, which governs how church services are held, which technology advancements are forbidden, and how the local community and families interact.

Amish people have church services in their houses on a rotating basis. Men and women sit on opposite sides of the room, facing one another, and the preacher stands in the middle to deliver the message.

They disagree with the use of radios, televisions, and the Internet in households because they consider these facilities to be obstacles that run contrary to the Christian message.

The Amish men choose to use a horse and buggy instead of cars, but they do operate some fire machinery, usually with the help of animals.

Who Are Mennonites?

Who Are Mennonites

Mennonites, who practice adult baptism, are Anabaptists. They belong to the pacifist religious groups that typically request exclusion from military service on the grounds of dispute because of their commitment to peace and social justice.

There are various Mennonite organizations, and some, but not all, follow specific dress and lifestyle practices that lead people to mistake them for Amish.

The sociological makeup of the Mennonite group is seen in Mennonite culture. The culture displays traits that are both uniform and diverse. 

While progressive communities aim for greater social engagement, older community orders try to keep the historical character. 

Overall, the Mennonite culture in America has shifted from being on the social edge to having restricted access to the social center’s institutions and organizations, including those in politics, education, and business.

The Sermon on the Mount and the Anabaptist Confession of Schleitheim serve as the foundation for the fundamental beliefs of Mennonites.

These fundamental principles involve, among other things, strict peace, avoiding oaths, adult baptisms, foot washing, church discipline and isolation from the outside world. 

These and other principles may not be practiced in every church in the same way.

What are the Differences Between Amish and Mennonite?

What Are The Differences Between Amish And Mennonite

There are many differences between Amish and Mennonite, are given below:

  1. The primary difference between Amish and Mennonite is that their beards grow when Amish men get married. Mennonite males don’t have beards.
  2. Another difference between Amish and Mennonite is that Mennonite women wear printed (typically flowery) or plain clothes, while Amish women and girls dress in solid colors. Mennonite schoolgirls do not wear black or white caps until they are 14, but little Amish girls do.
  3. Head coverings of Mennonites are tiny, usually see-through (transparent), and may or may not contain cap strings. Little girls typically have long braids running down their backs and don’t start wearing covers until they are school-age. While head coverings of Amish are bigger, opaque (solid black or white), and include cap strings that need to be knotted under the chin. Young girls usually put their hair up and may not wear covers at home but always wear caps outside. Until they get married, girls typically don’t wear white caps.
  4. Mennonites forbid wearing wedding rings, yet some do so for watches with simple bands. On the other hand, the Amish don’t wear any jewelry. Watches are kept in pockets or pinned to dresses by women under their capes.
  5. Mennonite women hardly ever walk barefoot or expose their toes. Socks are worn with sandals. Many individuals find it inappropriate to wear bare toes. While Amish women like to wear bare feet when the weather is beautiful, they typically wear plain black shoes when they go out.
  6. Mennonites have nicely trimmed beards, either with or without mustaches. While Amish men often don’t have mustaches and have beards when they are married.

Mennonites and Amish Hairstyles Rules for Men and Women

Mennonites And Amish Hairstyles Rules For Men And Women

Amish

For reasons rooted in the Bible, Amish hairstyles rules for women is that Amish women must cover their hair. Additionally, they do not cut their hair; instead, they put it all up in a bun for prayer.

For the traditional Amish, who believe that the Bible commands women to let their hair grow long, cutting the hair is a very inappropriate act.

Mennonites

The hair of traditional Mennonite women is pulled back or covered by a tiny white prayer hat as a sign of respect and the significance of their faith.

Although Mennonite women are not required to have long hair, the majority do. Even though the Mennonite church does not specify a particular haircut, women who labor in the home or on a farm should have hair that can be pushed back out of their faces for practical reasons.

Do Amish Drink Alcohol?

Do Amish Drink Alcohol

The majority of Amish churches discourage drinking alcohol, albeit many of them don’t have a strict prohibition. However, it’s uncommon to witness an Old Order Amish church member in a tavern or consuming a beer can. Most groups strongly discourage it.

While the older generation of Mennonites didn’t drink alcohol, the younger generation of Mennonites does, and it is legal to do so.

Are There Black Amish?

Yes. Amish persons of Black descent exist. But they are really uncommon. A few African-Americans have assimilated into the Amish society.

You can try to become Amish if you go to the Amish community’s leaders. You can eventually be converted into that religion if they think you’re going to be faithful and are willing to stick to its teachings. There may have been a color barrier in the past, but it doesn’t necessarily exist today.

What are the Differences Between Amish and Mennonites?

Highlighting the main differences between Amish and Mennonites in the following table:

AmishMennonites
Amish people dress plainly in simple colors.The Mennonites permit the wearing of flower prints in printed hues.
Amish people don’t own cars.Mennonites own cars.
Amish people don’t use modern technology.Mennonites use and incorporate technology.
Amish women enjoy going barefoot in nice weather.Mennonites women hardly ever walk barefoot or expose their toes.

Conclusion

Both the Amish and the Mennonites live a basic lifestyle centered on traditional principles and spiritual customs.

The difference between Amish and Mennonites is that Amish don’t use the grid, don’t use cars, and wear solid colors. The Mennonites permit printing, are connected to the grid, and own automobiles.

Read more: What is the Difference Between Family and Relatives?

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