Abducted Amish Girls Are Home!

I was shocked and horrified by the news about the two Amish girls in upstate New York who were abducted from their roadside stand. All day I've been watching for news about their whereabouts.

Many prayers have been answered. The girls have been found and returned to their parents, according to a Syracuse News Report. Thank God! It has to be a great relief for the family.

AmishAndPolice
Photo by Scott Schild

The abductors are still at large, though the police feel confident they will be found. But the most important thing is that the girls are home, safe. They are being checked out at a local hospital.

This story is a wonderful example of the power of prayers. Apparently a group of people had gathered at a local church to pray and sing. When they returned home, they were greeted with the good news of the girls' return.

This story is all the more personal for me because this is the area where Anna is from. She is the young woman who lived with us. I have not yet heard whether these two children are related to her. 

My prayers go up for all missing children and their parents. It has to be terrifying for any family to have children disappear. In this case, the children have found their way home. There are many times when it doesn't turn out that way. 

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25 thoughts on “Abducted Amish Girls Are Home!”

  1. I was so grateful to hear these girls were found. I’ve been following the story too ever since I heard about it and praying for their safe return. I didn’t realize this was the area where Anna is. I’m sure their whole community was praying for their safe return. To abduct two helpless children is just horrifying. I hope their abductors are found very soon.

    1. Hello AnnMary. I know, isn’t it awful to know these men preyed on the most innocent and vulnerable? From the sounds of it, the police are certain they will be found. But more importantly, the girls are back.

      Thank you for stopping by.

  2. This is one of those times when I realize that deep inside me I am still Amish. :) I was holding my breath- so glad they are home and safe.

  3. In Illinois there is a system set up called “Amber Alert” when a child is abducted. It happened this very day in the northern part of the state. I’m assuming all the cell phones in the entire state start bleeping obnoxiously. There’s no way it can be missed. It’s quite startling. On your phone screen a description of the vehicle and the city where the abduction occurred is posted so people on the roads can watch and contact the police with the whereabouts.
    What a horrifying experience for the girls and their communities. And thank God for their return.

    1. Fran, that does sound horrifying. Sounds like a good reason not to own a cell phone in Illinois. I suppose if you know it’s effective it’s not as bad, but my gracious!

      Yes, thank God for the way this turned out.

  4. Hi Saloma,
    Since yesterday I have received several calls from my Amish friends asking for information on this abduction. I hope that the girls receive counseling, just because they are home doesn’t mean all is well with these young girls.
    Tom The Backroads Traveller

    1. Tom, I know I thought about that also. The Swartzentrubers are the least likely to allow the counseling. Some of it depends on the family, too, I think. Let’s hope for the girls’ sake that they will.

  5. I am glad to hear that the children were found as quickly as they were.It must be so terrifying for parents. I am wondering if there were any adults present when they were grabbed. I know Amish children are given a lot of responsibility very young.The Amber alert has actually. been very helpful in tracking down abducted kids. Here its only on your phone if you sign up for it. But it is on TV and radio..I thought it was a national thing. I had not heard about these 2 girls. I am in St. Louis and we haven ‘t had much national news for the past week. Things here are still tense. I have stopped listening to the news as it is so disheartening.

    1. Sally, I cannot imagine what it’s like where you are. Missouri’s news IS the national news, for the most part. I have no idea what it would be like to be so near the tensions. My thoughts and prayers are for your safety, and for everyone else’s as well. It’s time to call in the peacemakers.

      I agree, Amish children are given a lot of responsibility. The rest of the family was in the barn, milking, when this occurred. The girls had decided to go out there when they saw a costumer there, according to the reports.

      What is so awful is that there are people who will take advantage of any opportunity to prey upon the innocent and the vulnerable. And some Amish parents seem unaware of the dangers. I imagine there will be less exposure of young children to the public in that community after this.

  6. Patricia Wright

    Prayer is very strong in many of us. There is no excuse for things like this to ever happen to anyone. I was so sad to see the story when it first broke, now, very happy that they are home. Hopefully, they are safe and are where they are loved very much. Now, we all need to pray that the abductors are caught. I also pray that they have loved ones they can talk to as I am sure it was so scary for them and their families. So, my prayers are with them and their families.

    1. Patricia, you’re right, there is no pardoning such evil acts. My heart goes out to the girls, and to their families. I just hope the girls also get some counseling. There has to be emotional fallout from what happened. Our continued prayers are important.

    1. I know, Katie. It makes you wonder what this couple was after. Did you see the latest reports? http://www.cbsnews.com/news/2-suspects-arrested-in-kidnapping-of-amish-girls-in-new-york-state/

  7. The answer of prayers is a great thing. I am glad that the children are safe at home. My prayers for them and their families will continue. May they all recover well and accept the offering of counselling.

  8. I live a few minutes from Saloma, and my thoughts turned to her (and this website) when I heard about the abductions.

    A New York Times update this evening brings the sad report that the girls were sexually abused. It appears that the woman involved may also be a victim of domestic violence.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2014/08/17/nyregion/upstate-couple-intended-to-abuse-amish-sisters-sheriff-says.html?hp&action=click&pgtype=Homepage&version=HpSum&module=second-column-region&region=top-news&WT.nav=top-news

    1. Julie, thank you for bringing this to our attention. I had read a report like this some hours ago, but not actually this one. It’s so sad when people do evil things. I’m glad the girls are home and safe, and that the perpetrators are caught. And I hope the girls will get counseling. Who wouldn’t need it after such an ordeal?

      1. Saloma, given that “computer forensics specialists plan to review electronic data and equipment from the house,” it wouldn’t surprise me to learn that the man in the couple, Stephen Howells, was involved in the use, creation and trading of child pornography, and filmed the acts of sexual abuse for that purpose. I have long worked with women’s media issues, and there’s a whole genre of Amish fetish porn. If photos and video exist, it will be terrible for the girls and family members if the material was released before the perpetrators were arrested, although of course filmed evidence will make it easier to obtain convictions. The faster the counseling intervention into the Post-Traumatic Stress that develops from sexual abductions, the better the outcome. I hope the girls’ families will be open to the girls receiving “best practices” treatment, both within and outside of the community. It seems like a “prayer plus” situation.

        1. Julie, thank you for this information, however disturbing. I had no idea about the Amish fetish porn. That would be just awful, should they have released this… how horrible. You’re right, this kind of thing screams for counseling. It is not a given, considering the Amish in that area are as conservative as they are. And the other thing about this, these girls would not have known anything about sex at all… what a horrifying way to find out about it… in the lowest form possible. I keep praying that these girls will receive counseling.

  9. “Amish fetish porn”? Ye gads. That thought had never occurred to me, but I suppose it shouldn’t be too surprising.

    The only remotely good thing I can think of in connection with the possibility of the abuse of these girls being broadcast is that in all likelihood they and their family won’t have to see it.

    I too hope the girls – and the family – get counseling. However, I don’t hold out much hope for it. The Amish are good at keeping secrets. Not so good at addressing them.

    1. That thought hadn’t occurred to me either, Elva. And I didn’t find it surprising, either.

      I have hope for the girls getting counseling, for the very reason that this is not a secret. The world knows about it. And isn’t it interesting how the perpetrators let them go because of the news reports? What a great example of what breaking the silence does to abuse…

      I will not give up hope that the girls will get counseling.

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