Sunday, September 2, 2012

This week on Jean: Jean answers some questions like divorce and surprisingly enjoys reading Amish novels from Beverly Lewis and others. With a homemade recipe for wedding cake from Jean.

Jean is old order Mennonite from New York State. Jean and her husband David and family live on a dairy farm, and travel their community using horse and buggy. She tells her story exclusively on Amish Stories.

Jean would love to answer more of your questions folks, so please ask away any questions that you may have regarding her old order Mennonite lifestyle. Richard

Thought this time I would answer a couple of questions that were asked. Just remember questions are always welcome. What do I like to read?  With farming, bake sales, etc. this time of year I don't usually read much, but because of my surgery I did get a lot of reading done. My first daily reading is the Bible.   In our home we read the Budget, Family Life, Young Companion and Blackboard Bulletin.  Also, we get the local daily paper Daily Messenger.  I did get a few novels in my Beverly Lewis and Wanda Brunstetter.  Also I read children's stories to Susan and David. 

Do Old Mennonites divorce?  When we marry - we marry until death do us part.  That is why we are advised to pray especially when we were courting to make sure that we are doing what God wants-that we are the right ones for each other.  Not our will be done, but God's will be done.  Which leads to answer the question, that divorces are very rare.  David and I have known couples who have separated from each other-but even that is a rare thing. 

What would happen if a couple did get divorced?  If a couple gets divorced they can not remarry until the spouse passes. In a situation where say a man divorces his wife for another woman -  neither his first wife or the man that left can remarry.  If he does remarry while his first wife is alive, he would be shunned from the church.  His first wife can not remarry unless he passes (dies).   It is not a fast decision made.  It goes before the Bishop, ministers and deacons first.  In that case where a husband leaves his wife and remarries-most of the time they move from the area and join another religion. 

The first wife stays among us, but does not remarry.  Of course a lot of things enter into whether say a person beats their spouse and children.  David and I know only of two couples that have divorced.  One a man left his wife to marry another woman.  He and his second wife moved away.  His first wife lives among us and has never remarried.  The second couple, as far as we know, neither have remarried.  Again, one moved away and the other still lives in our area and has never remarried. 

When we have shunning in our church, it is different from the Amish.  If someone is shunned, they can still come to meetings (church), we can still speak to them, do business with them and more.  They are not allowed to come to communion meetings that are held twice a year. 
Regarding a divorce among us, I am sure I have not given you everything in Old Order Mennonite views and handling.  It just is something that is very rare.
Be With God,

Wedding Cake Recipe: From Jean

1 lb. butter
1 lb. sugar

12 eggs separated                                   
1 1b. flour
2  tsp each of cinnamon and mace
1 tsp each of nutmeg and allspice
1/2 tsp cloves
2 lbs raisins
2 lbs currants                   
1 lb citron
1 lb almonds or finely chopped figs
1/4 cup brandy
2 tbsp lemon juice and rind of mone lemon

Citron should be cut in uniform pieces of about 1/8 inch thick.  If almonds are used, they should be balanced and chopped fine.  Mix the fruit and almonds or figs but not the citron and dust the fruit mixture with some of the flour.  Also the citron in a separate bowl.

In a separate bowl cream butter and sugar thoroughly and mix spices well into mixture.  Beat egg yolks until thick and lemon colored and blend into sugar and better mixture.  Mix in flour, lemon juice, rind and brandy.  Beat egg whites until stiff and dry and add to batter and fold in.  Next add the fruit mixture. 

If the cake is to be maked only line the pan  with two thickness of brown paper and butter the one coming in contact with the batter.  Alternate layers of butter and a layer of citron, beginning and ending with the batter.

If steaming butter pan well and layer as above.  Steam for 3 hours and then bake one and one half hours in a slow oven of 275 degrees.  If baking solely bake three hours in a preheated oven set at 325 degrees, if several small pans used baking time will be less.                 Jean


I've created this website out of my own interest in the Amish/Mennonite culture and of living in the country. Its a place for people who are interested in the Amish like myself, and its also a place to share Images of the beautiful country side that is all around me. my name is Richard, and I live very close to an Amish settlement here in Pennsylvania. This site is dedicated to my mother, who had started all of this by taking me as a child to Lancaster,pa from our apartment in the Bronx projects..........THANK YOU MOM............... Richard