Monday, August 13, 2012

On the Backroad to Heaven: Old Order Hutterites, Mennonites, Amish, and Brethren by Donald B. Kraybill and Carl F. Bowman

On the Backroad to Heaven by Donald B. Kraybill

The authors of this book take a look at four Old Order Anabaptist groups and explain the history, beliefs and practices of the groups, their similarities and differences and why they chose to live the way that they do. The Old Order groups are the most extreme in their beliefs and separation from modern society. Some eschew automobiles and electricity while others allow some modern devices while denying others such as the Bretheren's use of automobiles as long as the radios are removed.
I found this book to be very informative and well researched.
I chose to read this book for several reasons.
I have recently read books about the Amish and have read about the Hutterites in the past, but did not know much about the Mennonites or the Bretheren. I was most interested in the Bretheren because I am aware that many of their teachings and practices have influenced the Christian group that I meet with, the Lord's Recovery. While there are many differences, I did see many things in the beliefs and practices of the Brethren that are definite influences on those of the Lord's Recovery. Some of those include the practice of meeting with the church according to locality, having no bishops, having an attitude that "worldly" activities should be shunned, and a focus on the inner transformation of the believers. 

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