Amish & Mennonite
If you're from an Amish or Mennonite background and you're looking to leave the church, there are people who want to help you. Whether you need practical support transitioning out of your community or you just want to take courage from stories of other ex-Anabaptists who left the church, we hope you find comfort and guidance here. You can also see our main Resources page for more helpful information relating to mental health, crisis care, and LGBTQ resources.
Did you know?
Approximately 330,470 Amish live in North America.
An estimated 15% of Amish youth leave the church.
Amish Heritage Foundation ~ If you have an Amish background, this nonprofit exists to help you transition out of the church and recover mentally and emotionally, no matter how long ago you left. Former church-member and founder Torah Bontrager advocates for fellow Amish with compassionate secular values. If you need help finding housing, finishing your education, or you'd like another ex-Amish person who understands your journey to menor you, see their aid resources. They also provide financial assistance through their scholarship fund. Check out their podcast or donate to help Amish people get mental health services, education, and employment skills.
Amish Descent Scholarship Fund ~If you've dreamed of finishing your education but you don't know how you'll be able to afford to, you can apply for a scholarship from this organization founded by a small group of ex-Amish folks. Check out this short video about one of the founders who attained her dream of becoming a nurse!
The Flying Club ~ Patty Bear is a former Mennonite who left the church and became an airline pilot--and is now a life coach! If you could use a mentor who understands your background, Patty offers two different coaching packages designed to help you reconnect with what she calls, "The Call of Your Wild Soul." Her aim is to help you identify what's holding you back from living your most authentic, fulfilling life and chart a path to get there.
Domestic Shelters ~ Many religions condone domestic violence. You don't need to submit anymore. Find safety now for you and your children.
RAINN ~ The Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network is America's largest anti-sexual violence organization. Many religions blame victims and cover up sexual violence. If you've been assaulted, it is not your fault. If you need help, call RAINN's hotline or use their online chat.
Safe Place ~ Are you under 18 and don't know where to turn for help? Start with finding a free place to stay and counseling services.
Text "Safe" with your address, city, and state to 44357 (4HELP)
Books, Articles, and Media
Could you use the help of a counselor or therapist as you process your journey out of the Amish or Mennonite way of life? Though not many organizations exist specifically to help Anabaptists, you can always visit our main Resources page for mental health, crisis, and cult information. There are people with experience helping others leave isolated spiritual communities, and they want to help you, too. We applaud your courage and want to assist in whatever ways we can, so let us know in the Forum if there is something specific you're looking for! We'll do our best to help.