Tuesday, November 10, 2015
BISHOP ELI TELLS
I come from a family of 16 children - I am the eldest. Emma came from a family of 10 children. We grew up near each other, and went to the same school. Emma and I courted for quite a while and would probably still be courting if her parents hadn't decided to move. They would be taking Emma with them. The night I heard that, we went to the Bishop, set the wedding date and married about a month later. By the way, her parents did move, but ended up moving back again. I kid them and say they did that to get me to finally marry Emma.
Like Elmer said, we moved around and ended back in Pennsylvania. Our last move, so far, is in New York State. We have no plans on moving again, but we never know what the Lord wants us to do. So what's that old saying: you never say never.
Telling about our lives, I assume you mean Bishop family life. When I became Bishop, as happened when Bishop Joseph became Bishop, some of our older children were not happy. They had to accept it because it was God's decision not ours, but that did not make them happy. Young folk seemed to think they were going on display because their father was Bishop. In a way, I guess they were. If any of them did anything wrong - not matter how small - people would say, but you are the Bishop's son or you are the Bishop's daughter. Emma and my reply were they are not perfect. They are young folk and so make mistakes. Whatever they did was taken care of at home. No one adult or child or young folk is perfect. We all make mistakes - some worse than others.
It doesn't bother them as much now, as they are all grown up with families of their own. Still my grandchildren get that there Grandfather is the Bishop - like they didn't know that already.
Being a Bishop, at times, I live a busy life. In addition to my farm, I have the work of the Lord. It helps that my sons live near by as they help with chores when necessary. Also Amish members of our church help when they know I have other things to do and can't handle everything. Even our English neighbors have come to help milk cows, feed the animals, etc.
In our home, I have an office, that I use for my study. Also, it is used if someone wants to come to my home to discuss something with me, set up their wedding, funeral or something else. If women come along, Emma comes in the office with her.
I am sometimes called to a home if someone is ill, a fire, someone is injured, and more. Also, I go to the hospital at times.
Really, I am not like the Bishop you read about in the novel books. I don't think my Amish people are afraid of me as you read people are in novels.
I don't really know what information you want to know about the Bishop. So please ask. That is how I know to answer your questions.
Our Amish people help me as much, if not more, than I help them at times. They help me on my farm. Most anything I ask someone, they will do for Emma or myself. When I go on vacation, they care for our farm. Even Bishop's need vacation for a rest.
God Bless and Keep you,