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Amish may take a “wait and see” approach to see how a technology impacts another district. An Amish person may acquire a piece of forbidden technology, or openly flaunt church rules on dress or business activity.An Amish person may also commit acts more universally recognized as sin, such as cheating or adultery.
If a wayward member remains in violation of the rules after entreaties of the ministry, the individual may be excommunicated by the bishop.
An excommunicated member may return at any time, make a confession before the bishop or the church, and usually after a six-week period, be reinstated into the church.
as “a ritualistic reminder of having gone astray and having broken your commitment to the Lord Jesus and the body of believers you made your commitment and baptismal promise with.” The purpose of shunning is not punishment for its own sake, but rather as a statement that the rest of the congregation takes their baptismal commitment seriously.
However, when enough members of a community feel strongly that something should be allowed, this can generate significant pressure on the leadership.
Church leadership may choose to temporarily allow a given technology before bringing it up for consideration.Most importantly, the Amishman (himself subject to the twice) explains, it is done “so the soul of the deviant may be saved on the day of Judgement.”Amish do not relish the thought of shunning.