When the Amish farmers started moving into our area I was excited and hopeful. Small farms in my county would survive if only because ever-growing Amish and Mennonite families were looking for good land to farm.
Since these quiet hardworking people have been here I have enjoyed watching their children play at their school, I”ve shopped at the hardware store they’ve opened and seen the surprise and delight on the faces of the customers at the local food co-op when a farmer delivers his goods via horse and buggy.
But I have come to realize that maybe the biggest lesson they have to teach us is that of community. They live in tight-knit communities which place their emphasis on each other and not on consumerism. Not for them the chasing of the next shiny bauble, better cell phone, or bigger TV. They conserve their time and spend it on each other. A life style we would all do well to imitate.
Community is what will save us if the economy crisis worsens, which it certainly looks like it might. People helping people, directly, either individually or as part of a group. Communities coming together to make sure everyone’s basic needs are being met. Grow the food and make sure everyone gets some. Make sure houses are warm in the winter. Offer everyone the chance to contribute and the chance to benefit. True community.