I once dated a wonderful Mennonite man. The Mennonite split from the Amish over the use of buttons and chrome bumpers, so he said rather tongue in cheek. The Mennonite and Amish have a great deal in common theologically but the Mennonite are more progressive in their acceptance of technology. The congregation I attended was rather down to earth but the members were highly educated and tended toward the professions such as engineering, medicine, law, prominent business owners and so on. they are a great group of people!
Mennonite families has taken on a more modern view like driving or using vehicles and farm equipment even technology like phones and electricity. They still have the same believe system as the Amish. Mennonites worship in English (most of the communities) as the Amish still worship in High German. There are quit a diverse group of both Mennonites and Amish and you will have to look at the 'church' in which they belong.
This is a good question, I am glad you asked, because I didn't know and now I am learning what the difference is.
Amish is a sub-category of Mennonite. Here is how the whole hierarchy works:
The largest group is the Anabaptists (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anabaptist), who are Christians who believe that adult baptism is a necessity because people must make their own choice for Christ - infant baptism, in their view, does not make one a Christian. Most also hold that the Sermon on the Mount is to be taken as literally as possible, and is central to Christian Faith. This makes them pacifist, and Anabaptist churches are sometimes grouped with the Quakers as Peace Churches.
These days, most Anabaptists are Mennonites (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mennonite). The Mennonites are Anabaptists who follow the teachings of Menno Simons (1496–1561).
Later, in 1693, there was a schism in the Swiss Mennonite church. The issue was shunning, the practice of social isolation of Mennonites who do not follow the rules of the Mennonite order. Followers of Jakob Ammann. Followers of Amman became known as Amish (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amish_%28d … uation%29, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amish ).
Old Order Mennonites and Old Order Amish dress in older European styles of dress and do not use, or limit the use of, modern technology such as electricity and telephones. However, there are several sub-groups of Christian religious Mennonites and Amish who do dress more to today's conventions and do use technology. In addition, Amish is also an ethnic group, so those who live in modern ways and are not part of the Amish faith may still consider themselves culturally Amish.
The largest group of Amish settled from Germany and German-speaking Switzerland in Pennsylvania. The German word for "German" is "Deutsch." These people became known as the Pennsylvania Dutch or Pennsylvania Germans. They are also settled in Indiana, and new settlements are growing further west in the US.
Both groups are from Christian Anabaptist stock.... Mennonites were founded by Menno Simons (1496-1561) The Sub group called the Amish started following the teachings of Pastor Jakob Ammann in 1693 and then became what is today called Amish or Amish-Mennonite.
Most noteworthy difference between these Baptists and other Baptist would be the degrees of separation that they practice and how they view violence... Mennonite stock are generally far more pacifistic than other baptists.
With many Mennonites, you might not not even know they are different from evangelicals in society. But the spectrum of Mennonites range from those who are similar to evangelical Christianity all the way to the Amish, from where they might appear like the Amish for all intents and purposes.
As another noted, they both come from the Anabaptist movement and broke apart at the time of Jakob Ammann. There is debate within the Anabaptist movement of who really strayed from the original teachings of Menno Simons, the Mennonites or the Amish.
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