Caption: Sarah Borntreger, above, found working with horses a familiar comfort since leaving the Amish.
While the retention rate for the Amish church is remarkably high (over 90 percent by some estimates), that still leaves a couple of thousand people who leave each year. The cases that usually grab the headlines are people who write scathing critiques of their former Amish life or make sensational claims about their life among the horse and buggy people. The reality of those leaving the Amish is usually more mundane. The vast majority who leave the Amish leave simply because they want to advance their education or to pursue a different theological path. I was happy to see a story about a young Wisconsin woman who left her Amish family to pursue her dream of becoming a nurse. She has plenty of nice things to say about the Amish and her family, but she just wanted more than what she would be permitted by staying within the church. A pretty simple story, but one that often gets overlooked in a media landscape more focused on the sensational. Read about 26-year-old Sarah Borntreger here.