Love and look after others are most necessary

I look out the window of our small office and wonder what tidbits I should share with all of you. My thoughts turn to the letters and notes I have received from those of you who kindly pointed out to me that, unfortunately, many Amish seem to be naive about having to wear face masks during these pandemic times.

Oh my god I wish I could do everything right for you There seem to be more different opinions and ways of life than I could ever say. Then there are also six ways to look at the same board. Sometimes I feel like I am just tossing all the ideas and theories into one big bag, shaking them up and throwing them away, and seeing if there are any good mixes left. In any case, there is always a way to respect others and evaluate their ideas, no matter where we are or what denomination we belong to. Doesn’t it all come back to loving others more than ourselves?

Well, to target the stark reality that masks are not readily seen in numerous Amish communities. I guess you are right. While I don’t personally know many Amish people in larger communities, or even know their overall standard of living, I would guess that most of those who don’t wear masks may be for two or three reasons.

I suspect most Amish people are known to use various natural home remedies. Hence, they are not so concerned about disease and think that things they have relied on over the years can get better soon enough.

Second, I know Amish who have watched other death rates drop when corona numbers went up, and observed that natural deaths are tagged with corona, which raises questions about what may or may not be exact.

Perhaps the third thing many of them cling to is the idea that although the virus is transmitted through the air we breathe, the germ is “thin or light” enough to get through the fabric or substance that we breathe is used to make masks.

Here I am, just a little Amish housewife; While I can’t change everyone with the specified “Amish” sticker, I want to do my part in the masking. As a community, we wear masks when we go to town (as we call our shopping). Regardless of which belief system any of us have adapted, I wonder if it doesn’t all come down to loving and respecting others about ourselves.

Our children love masks. I made sun-shining yellow masks for each of them with quotes like: “Jesus and I, he holds us tight in his arms and he keeps his promises.” They love to wear their matching masks, which makes them feel pretty adult.

The pandemic had been a train for us all in so many different ways. May we all learn to pull it off together instead of stepping up to our ideas and stepping directly into other people’s perspectives, only to both collapse back down.

The virus has adjusted our plans in the upcoming adoption ceremony plans. The adoption is still ongoing, although we were told it should be completed sometime in February. Since it was pushed out a lot more times than I could count, we were skeptical about planning it. Even so, we know that God is the Master of everything, and in His own good time everything will come together.

So yes, we are planning an adoption party even though we have reduced the number of guests we wanted to host. I had told Daniel before that I would like to invite everyone from the east to the west coast to celebrate this greatest event.

Now that I can’t serve you all dinner, I’ll have to be content with sharing a few recipes that will give you a taste of what dinner will look like. We are planning what is known as an Amish meal, consisting of a luxury salad, mashed potatoes, sauce, grilled chicken, vegetables, cake and ice cream. This week I’m giving you the recipe for Amish mashed potatoes. While I have no idea why, mashed potatoes are an old readiness of many Amish communities. Enjoy!

Gloria Yoder is an Amish mother, housewife, and writer based in rural Illinois. To learn more about the column, visit www.amish365.com/about.

AMISH WEDDING MASHED POTATOES

• 6 medium-sized potatoes

• ½ stick butter

• 4 ounces of cream cheese

• ¼ cup of sour cream

• ½ cup of milk

2 teaspoons salt (or to taste)

Peel the potatoes and cut into pieces. Transfer to a medium-sized kettle and add 1 cup of water. Simmer until the fork is tender. Drain and puree.

Next add the remaining ingredients and puree again until nice and fluffy. Depending on the type of potatoes you’re using, you may need to add more milk until the consistency you want is achieved.

Serve with browned butter, sauce or pasta. Delicious!

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