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Amish or Mennonite driving buggy down road in the rain
Here Are The Biggest Differences Between The Amish And Mennonites
History - Science
The Amish and Mennonites have Anabaptist roots, a group of early Protestant Christians who arose after the Protestant Reformation fractured the Catholic church in the early 1500s.
One Anabaptist group followed Dutch preacher Menno Simmons and became Mennonites, while another group went with Swiss preacher Jakob Ammann and became the Amish.
While both groups adopted back-to-basics Christianity, the Amish focused on staying isolated from the world, while Mennonites focused on missionary work and mingling with society.
Today, over 2 million Mennonites are spread worldwide in 86 different countries, including in Africa. Over two-thirds claim African, Asian, or Latin American heritage.
The Amish are far less numerous than the Mennonites, whose 367,000 or so members exist almost exclusively in the United States. Some also live in Canada, Argentina, and Bolivia.
The Amish stay separate from the outside world and take their traditions very seriously — including "shunning" rulebreakers. However, they do welcome visitors.
This is the main difference between the Amish and Mennonites: isolation vs. integration. The Amish are loosely tied to the rest of humanity, while Mennonites could pass for anyone.
Another key difference is the degree of differences in practices. Amish communities are strict with little variation, while Mennonites can range from strict to liberal.
Both groups are fundamentally Christian but have their own way of conducting services. The Amish host services in private in their own homes, while Mennonites hold public services.