Thursday, January 19, 2012

Swartzentruber Amish, New Stove

New Stove

As many of our guests know, the Millersburg, Ohio Barn Inn Bed and Breakfast has "adopted" a Swartzentruber Amish family that sells baskets out of their house to subsidize their income. As a rule, members of the Swartzentruber sect are not as prosperous as the more progressive old order and new order Amish because their Ordnung limits their use of technology. For over a year, we have been recommending our guests go to their home to see their lifestyle, purchase baskets, and most importantly, experience a "step back in history." 

Old Stove, circa 1922
 As we got to know the family, we learned that their circa 1922 stove was grossly inadequate, not providing enough heat for the winter and falling apart. When I inquired, the mother confided that they needed a new one, but did not yet have the money to buy one. Years earlier they had purchased this as a used stove and the reservoir that decades before would have held water and served another family, was long gone and the doors fell off when opened. We announced a fund for the purchase of a new stove for them, hoping for a Christmas, 2011 delivery. What a thrill it was when guests stepped forward and made that purchase possible.  Within two weeks guests had donated enough money for the purchase and it was delivered one week before Thanksgiving, November 17, 2011!  We praise God and thank our kind guests.

The family is extremely grateful for all of the generousity that has been shown to them. The new stove has been installed into their home for about two months now and has made a world of difference. The family has a tenth child now so it has been helpful to have a safe stove where they can keep warm water. Some of the children have written letters to explain why they like their new stove and how helpful it has been.

Note that the chilren are mentioning that they can "fire it from the front".  Their old stove had to be fired from the back and had only a small area that held only about three pieces of wood, whereas this stove holds many more pieces.
Submitted by Loretta, January 19, 2012 

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