Episode Nine – Living Fast
Episode Nine recap:
Two weeks after I left the Amish I was in a car accident. I had purchased a 1995 Manual transmission Ford Contour, and I was traveling on a winding two-lane road. I don’t know what happened. Perhaps I never will. But when I came to I was upside down in a creek, hanging from the seatbelt of my car, my head in water, the seatbelt holding me inches from drowning. Three days later I walked out of the hospital, on crutches because of a broken ankle, but only minor other scratches and bruises. Apparently I had hit the concrete retaining all of a culvert at 55 MPH head on. At twenty-three years old, my life, for all intents and purposes, should have ended there in that ditch, before I ever really got started with my life in the outside world.
Nine years later I was sitting in my office at the car dealership when my phone rang. Out of respect for the customer at my desk, I didn't answer. But when it kept ringing, the calls coming from five different Ex-Amish buddies, I knew the worst had happened. I just didn’t know the name.
Cephas Yoder, one of my best friends, had just been pronounced dead at the scene of a one-vehicle car accident. I sat in my office in stunned silence for a verry long time. Somehow, through the confusion, I vaguely remember my customer being handed off to a different salesperson while I sat there in a daze, unable to fathom the news.
Cephas left the Amish faith from a small community in Dixon, Missouri. The first time I met Cephas, I was blown away by his big ideas of how far he was going to go in life, how many millions of dollars he would make, and in how short of an amount of time. My first instincts were to hold him back, to tell him that if it were that easy, everyone, including myself, would be multi-millionaires by now. But then I changed my mind. Why? Why hold someone back, or tell someone they can’t do something? In fact, what good could possibly come from giving someone a reality check on what I viewed as ‘lofty’ life goals?
Over the next few years, I watched as Cephas adjusted to the outside world. We rode together to Joplin, Missouri to survey the tornado damage, and then later we went back to help rebuild. I will never forget how I was inside one of the houses hanging sheetrock, while Cephas was picking up debris in the back yard of the same home. Before long, Cephas came inside and ordered me to follow him to the back yard to admire his work. As a surprise to the homeowners, he had dug a hole in the ground, carried over a bunch of rocks, and made a really nice little underground yard water fountain. What I wouldn’t have given to see the faces of the owners when they saw that one bright little highlight in the midst of their debris-strewn neighborhood. But I saw that excitement on Cephas’ face, and that was worth almost as much.
If I could describe Cephas in three words it would be these. Fearless, Motivated, and Creative. It didn’t take long, in talks with him, to realize that he would not be deterred from achieving these lofty goals. On days when weather prevented him from working, like one cold and snowy day that I remember in particular, Cephas would come into my office and sit down to discuss, no, to brag, about these dreams. Coincidently, on these bad weather days, customers were usually not out shopping for cars, so the timing worked well. Cephas and I would sit in my office and for hours, go around and around in circles about how he would achieve these goals. While Cephas had the energy, motivation, and willpower, he lacked the know-how. So, I would force him to write down the step-by-step of what it would take to get to the next level, and to track the progress, down to the minutest detail. Cephas was stubborn, and convinced that all it took was a strong will, and a stronger back, and the success would readily come. And in this, while not wrong, I felt like I could help him, by possibly reframing his way of thinking. One example of his stubbornness was his insistence that one doesn’t need credit, or banks, or for that matter, people in high places, to reach wild success. I tried, in vain, to tell him that without credit, he will never get the loans he needs to buy equipment, offices, trucks, and all the other things he will need to achieve these goals. But Cephas, stubborn to the core, laughed my advice off. By the time he is 25, he insisted, he will be a multi-millionaire, debt free, and he would do it all without worrying about stupid details, like establishing credit. The bet became that, if he were successful in this I would have to, not only eat my own underwear, but also my own words and credit opinion. And if he failed, he would come back in and buy a vehicle from me in order to establish credit, swallow his words, and try things my way. The bet came up every time we saw each other, with me pulling up the calculator app on my phone, typing away, then reminding him that, if he wishes to win the bet, he needs to have the amount of $278,000.00 sitting in his account by now. Then adding, “How’s that going for you?” Cephas, an ornery grin on his face, would state that ‘it isn’t the sprint that counts, but rather the entire marathon.’ In hindsight, I’m doubtful that Cephas was going to win the bet, but if any Ex-Amish had the potential, it was he. And really, all bets aside, I really wish I could’ve seen him try. And succeed.
At Cephas’ funeral, the Amish preachers used his death, as a sinner in the outside world, as an example to instill fear into the hearts of those still in the community. They spoke of the prodigal son who went into the world, but the Prodigal son, unlike Cephas, was given the opportunity to come home and repent. But now, verily I say unto you, for Cephas, it is too late! And I, in their eyes just another sinful Ex-Amish, sat on a bench, separated from the righteous, and my heart boiled as I listened to the judgement of my friend.
The Amish community insisted that Cephas be buried among them, as if in doing so God might have a tiny sliver of mercy on his soul and perhaps, just perhaps, allow him into heaven. We threw dirt onto his Amish grave. Then, I whispered a few final words to my departed friend, quiet enough that the Amish couldn’t hear, and drove back to the city.
Cephas Yoder - March 16, 1992, to October 17, 2011. May all your lofty dreams and goals be achieved on the other side.
134 thoughts on “Episode Nine – Living Fast”
What a sad story, but how wonderfully you put everything. I so admire guys like you who speak up, speak truth, and speak well!
I wanted to let you know how sorry I am to hear about the death of Cepheas, I watch your show every week and admire you and the former Amish and am saddend to know that Cepheas is no longer with us in a physical form but he will always live in the hearts of all who knew and loved him! God almighty has a plan for us all and he has a plan for Cepheas and though we may not understand what that plan is we will in good time when we see Cepheas at the rapture. Mose I admire you for your efforts to help the young men who have decided the Amish way of life is not for them, I commend you and want you to know that you and your community are in my prayers! Good luck to you and stay safe and know that no matther what the Amish elders say God does love you and you are not doomed to hell for leaving the Amish, As long and you accept Jesus Christ as your lord and savior and have faith you will see Cephas again when you join the heavanly fold! God bless you!
God our Father,
Your power brings us to birth,
your providence guides our lives,
and by Your command we return to dust.
Lord, those who die still live in Your presence,
their lives change but do not end.
I pray in hope for my family,
relatives and friends,
and for all the dead known to You alone.
In company with Christ,
Who died and now lives,
may they rejoice in Your kingdom,
where all our tears are wiped away.
Unite us together again in one family,
to sing Your praise forever and ever.
Rest in peace Cephas!
What a beautiful prayer. Thank you for posting that. I struggle with religion, but that makes me want to pray!
Religion is the problem, but God is not the problem, the problem is that people simply dont know who God is or what God is.God has all the answers and he gives us the answers not more questions.
Amazing prayer. I was brought to tears as I read it, remembering my father’s life. He went to be with Christ 12/7/2006. We pray for Cephas.
Being raised in strick Holiness Churches do understand what they go thru. About 14 months ago I had the scales fall from my eyes concerning BEING UNDER THE LAW, and now see as clear as the noon day sun. I have been given the understanding that will really help people to see how to live a overcoming life by being out from under the Law. I am on facebook if anyone is interestd contact me.
Thank you sir.
Hugs, Mose. It’ll get better. My daughter, studying to be a psychologist, pointed out that kids under stress are statistically much more accident prone. After three serious car wrecks, maybe we should warn the kids coming out to take their time doing things, take deep breaths, and pace themselves. Also avoid our junk food and eat plenty of fruits and vegetables!
I was watching Amish: Out of order last night and it was about a young kid that was very ambitious and kind and very motivated to live a good life through hard work. It was inspiring to me…to the point that I felt like trying to reach out and to say thank you to this young man because I have been going through a tough time lately and quite honestly it was a good kick in the pants. Seeing a very young man working so hard to achieve his dreams was motivational. You could tell the holy spirit was with this young man and I felt it watching him. When I did try to find this Cephas Yoder I went to Google thinking maybe I could find a discussion blog on NatGeo or something but what I found was this and I am just devastated. What a bright and inspiring young man…I am truly sad to find out that he has passed away. Just want to say thanks to Mose and NatGeo for sharing his story. Life can be so unfair. And I hate to see such great people leave us so soon. My thoughts and prayers are with all of the ex-amish, especially his brother Gideon. You are so brave…each and every one of you. Keep up the good work Mose…you are doing the Lords work.
I just this VERY morning watched the episode with Cephas Yoder. He was a very inspiring young man and seemed very determined. He bought a house in this episode and without credit from a bank. He was also working on an oil rig and I must say–he wanted to do so much that I was looking forward to seeing how he made out. I an very saddened by the turn of events and I presume it was an auto accident that killed him.
I am very very sorry for your loss and for the fact that the television viewers will not see how his earthly life might have turned out. I am sure he is in a special place in heaven.
Your mention of the Amish community that said he was lost was just an example of the closed minds that isolated communities can have. I feel God knew Cephas and his heart and that his Amish family was misguided.
My sympathy and prayers are with you.
so sad to hear about cephas! he seemed like an amazing guy with a great deal of potential. my deepest condolences go out to all of his friends and family for their loss. God bless you Cephas!
I knowed Cephas from an Amish metal shop in Pennsylvania. Where he worked from daylight till dark, six days a week. He told me that he was planning to leave the Amish order because it was not the way for him. He was a wonderful young man and I helped him any way that I could. I was very saddened by his sudden death. He had dreams bigger than the sky itself. He will always be loved and missed.
Thank you for being a small part of Cephas’ life. He is greatly missed in the Columbia area.
I’m deeply sorry for your personal loss and that of the entire ex-Amish community. I watched the episode today, and was shocked and saddened. It’s strange how you can feel such emotion for someone you don’t actually know. Cephas seemed like an amazing young man. No disrespect to his family, but they aren’t God–they almost seem cruel. God instructs us to love one another. I’m not God either, but I’m willing to bet that God thinks that Cephas is special. God bless you, Mose–friend to all. God bless Cephas.
My thoughts exactly. It is strange how you can have such deep emotion for someone you didn’t even know. It is a great compliment to those involved in making the program. This is the most powerful documentary I have ever seen.
I just watched the episode today, and found out he passed away..My 9 year old daughter and I watch the show whenever we can..She doesn’t know he passed away yet. What a tragic loss. He had so much to look forward to. he succeeded on buying his house,repaired it nicely..I do believe if he didn’t lose his life, he would of succeeded in becoming a rich man someday like he said..I’m still in shock to hear the news…God Bless
I couldn’t believe this story. I was blown away when I found this article. I really admired this boy and am so sad to hear of his loss. Just watching him on one episode made me feel like I knew him. Now to see him gone, makes me wanna cry. I wish I could have met him personally. The world would be a much better place if filled with more people like him.
Heaven has surely received a fine young man in Cephas Yoder. The saying is “Only the Good Die Young.” May Cephas rest in peace. Although this has now been a period of time since your community’s loss, my prayers go out to you & the Ex-Amish community in Columbia, as well as his Amish family.
My deepest condolences for the loss of your friend and brother Cephas. Any loss of life is tragic, especially one so young. My thoughts and prayers to you and yours as you continue to remember and recover from the loss of Cephas. Best wishes to you all in the years to come.
Hello Mose. I was so devastated to hear of Cephas’s passing. He was so tenacious for his life ahead. He had dreams, and a zeal for life , family and friends that touched my heart. I am so sorry to hear of him gone and I pray daily that you can make his memory mean something to the amish community. He will always be with you and in our hearts. God Bless you Mose. You and your family and community. If you need anything, please email me and I will do what I can to help yo all. email@example.com
Dear Mose,I am watching your show as I am typing. I knew from the opening something awful was going to happen,but never did I think Cephas was going to die. I have not quit crying. I am in shock. I have become attached to you and your family and these young men and women who you are helping all of the time. Then I thought as the show went on,Amos was going to crash. When the call just came and they said Cephas,it was like “Not him”. Not any of them. Thank you so much to allow me as a viewer to come into your life and everyone elses. I am not Amish. But one thing you said in one of the past shows Mose,Amish was a lot of man made rules and it was like this light went off in my head . I was raised Catholic and left that faith at 19. It was nothing but man made rules. It was a endless life of what ever you did was connected with sin and going to hell and guilt,always guilt. You were excommunicated from the church and your marriage DOES NOT count if you leave the Catholic church. So in some ways I am able to relate when you talk about the faith part. You are now saying “Our communtiy lost a great friend.” I feel as a viewer friend, I lost a hope for the youth of today in a fine young man by the name of Cephas Yoder. One thing I find outstanding in these young men and women,they want the freedom to be where their dreams take them. They take what they were raised with,many trades and show at their young ages after leaving,they are not afraid to work. Much of the youth of today,are lazy and do not have a trade. I am sorry for your loss Mose. I am sorry that you won’t be eating your shorts. I would like to donate to his Memorial Fund.
God Bless. Linda
Hello. My name is Jena, and I just got done watching tonights episode. I write this with a heavy heart. Mose, I am so very sorry. I first saw Cephas a couple weeks ago on an episode, and I thought “WHAT A HANDSOME YOUNG MAN.” Let me give you a background on me. My name is Jena and I am an ex-Pentecostal. My husband has been serving in Afghanistan for one year and got taken away from me and my daughter just three days after our wedding. Our daughter Grace, was only six months old then. Today, she is now 18 months. Mose, in my opinion, the Amish, just like the Pentecostal, are more like cults. Cephus was such a good kid, you could tell. At the time when my husband was deployed, I wanted to curse God, and I get it if you do too. But…for some reason, tonight, when I asked God why on earth would you take an amazing person like Cephas, I heard a small voice in my head say “He wanted to buy property, the best one, and I gave it to him up here.” I all of a sudden felt a calm from God. I just feel like I wanted to share that with you. There are some people in this life God puts here to make us all see the simplicity and beauty of our everyday lives. Cephus, in just three episodes, gave me a new belief on life. He gave me hope that my husband and I will make it through this.
I relate to Gee Ma’s experience. Leaving the Church is a similar experience on a smaller scale. I can visit my Mother and other family members, but there is always a “wall” so to speak. My soul is always of great concern to them. Also these rules made by men get in our way of truly living as Spiritual beings.
I was also very saddened and shocked by Cephas’s passing. It felt too soon for him to go. In his short time here he has left with us his inspiring life story to encourage us all to live true to who we are. I feel when we are true to our core is when we are closest to God. Thank you Mose for all your tremendous work. Thank you Cephas for your short time spent with us.
You know what I forgot to write,and I just realized? Cephas had a seat belt on in one of the filmings that you used for his “memorial” show, to help everyone come together at your home after his very empty amish funeral. He is talking to the camera as he is driving. I might be wrong,but I remember thinking,why he IS wearing a seat belt here. God Bless,Linda
I am so truly and genuinely sorry for the loss of your dear friend Cephus. When I saw the news of his death, about 10 minutes ago, on “Out of Order” I immediately broke down because I know that your community lost a great person. I was not fortunate enough to know Cephus personally, and have only grown to know him through the television show however, it is very clear that he was a person with dreams and goals, and the drive and the aspiration to achieve those things that he knew he wanted for himself, to make himself a better person; a successful person.
My wife and I will be praying for you, your family, and your friends.
Very truly yours,
Los Angeles, CA
Rest in Peace Beautiful spirit until that Great gettin’ up morning! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WtmAVGPEPSI
“Go rest high on that mountain
‘Cause, Son, your work on earth is done
Go to Heaven a shoutin’
Love for the Father and the Son”
First of all, I just want to let you know how fascinating your show is to me. For us “English” people it truly helps us question things in our lives that need questioning. I think that life for the Amish and English would be better if we could find a halfway point. I really respect your ability to find the middle ground and compromise.
That being said, I wanted to express my grief for the loss of your friend Cephas. He seemed like a tremendous young man with a great outlook on life. I’m not one for reality TV, but your show has riveted me every Tuesday. Cephas was a person that exemplified what we need more of nowadays – the desire to work hard and capitalize on the American dream when given the opportunity. May his soul be blessed and keep up the tremendous work, Mose.
My deepest heartfelt sympathies go out to all of you, Cephas’ friends and family. I have enjoyed watching Cephas on the show and loved and was inspired by his positive and hardworking attitude. What an inspiration he was to so many. Please know Cephas and all of you are in our every prayer. All of you are so courageous and I admire you all beyond words. My friend who is from India told me that they have a saying in India about young people who are taken from this world too soon. “When a young person passes from
this life it means they were an old soul. They didn’t come to earth to learn, they came to teach others.” Lots of Love and my absolute best to all of you.
I am so very sorry for the loss of Cephas. Such a fine young man. It was truly generous of God to loan the world another of his children for a while. Mose, i genuinely enjoy your program. You are doing such loving and giving things for your fellow ex-Amish. Take care and I will offer up a prayer for Cephas. I feel confident that God is pleased with you and your little family. Sincerely, Shirley D. Seattle, Washington.
I am so sorry for the loss of Cephas, what a wonderful young man. I can’t believe it happened months ago, I pray all of you have found comfort in the Lord.
Our family is praying for your community and ESP for those most deeply affected by the loss of such a special, & brave young man. We can take solace in knowing that his life on earth was cut short because the Good Lord had important plans for him as his eager yet humble servant in Heaven. In this we can rejoice and for those who knew & miss him, you can be sure you will see him again one day! The Lord Giveth and the Lord taketh away. Blessed be the name of the Lord.
Cephas knew in his spirit he was going to live in a Mansion soon…In My Father’s house are many mansions…where I am, there you may be also.
Cehpas has his mansion in the time he said without
credit. Eat your shorts Mose! God Bless.
I am writing this in condolence of your very good friend Cephas Yoder. I am not a religious person. I do however have followed the “transitions” of Amish folk for 10 years. Cephas was barely mentioned prior to the dedication/tribute that was aired earlier today. However, I found myself- as I do now writing this, wiping away tears of sadness. I live in an area where the English have established ourselves in territory that overlaps the wildlife population. I also have lost friend to the same situation, regardless of the use of a seat-belt. I mourn for him because of his verve for life and the determination in him that I see in myself. Identifying with him is all we have, for those of us who never knew him. I find it interesting that the X-Amish gathering did the same thing that the “established” do when a friend leaves us however sudden. Tell favorite stories and antidotes in order to celebrate the person they were here on Earth. Cephas was an inspiration NOT AN EXAMPLE. His brother and you both know this in your heart of hearts. I do not believe that God himself has a religion. Hell was not invented until the New Testament. Historically speaking the man they called Jesus was a rebel storming though the temples wreaking on the monetary proprietors—I am sure a forgiving Lord could understand a “close encounter” between two of His creations. Realistically this , without even trying to sugar coat the situation, is exactly what happened. As much as I could WISH his live on this Earth could have been more extensive in order to pass on his values and ambitions in 1st person- I think you are doing the next best think with a fund- Hopefully a scholarship for the X=-Amish- that will keep his name alive so that no one will forget such a focused individual.
I have re-read this and even though I was diligent with my spelling and punctuation… I still found many mistakes. Please excuse them, and add the appropriate corrections- extensive as they may be.
Sorry for the lost of Cephas he was my favorite one from all the others! He knew how to work hard, he said once in the program: Work hard and live hard he was a true inspiration of goals and how to work hard o achive them.. He knew the ony way to achieve things is by working, saving, dreaming and living your life and I barely saw him but thats the impression I got from him. May his soul be in the best place can be!! I will miss this handsome boy!!!
I am truly heart broken to hear of Cephas’ passing. As many have said he was one of our favorite youth represented here. He represented the best of what you try to accomplish in your work.
My prayers go out to you and the rest of the community.
Mose, my husband & I have watched your show for a while now & we really think you’re doing a good thing in your community. We were stunned while watching last night & it was revealed that Cephas was killed in a car accident. Just couldn’t believe it. Even though we didn’t know Cephas personally, we both sat there & cried. Of all the young men on the show that are ex-Amish, Cephas seemed to be the one working the hardest with the biggest dreams & the strongest determination to make those dreams a reality. Not taking anything away from the other hard working young men, but Cephas really seemed to have his “head on straight”. I know it can’t be easy for any of you to leave the Amish community & start over in the English world. Our hearts & prayers go out to Cephas’ family and friends. This is a time when you need a strong faith & a strong support system. In watching your show, I’ve seen you visiting different churches, different religions. I am not pushing my religion on you at all, but I do feel the church I attend is a better fit for you, as an ex-Amish, than some that you have been visiting. Try the Primitive Baptist. There are many in Missiouri. One brother in particular my husband & I correspond with in Missiouri is Elder Kenneth Clevenger. Thank you Mose, for everything you do for these young people.
I have become a fan of your show and am becoming acquainted with the people in your life. It is a wonderful thing you are doing in helping young people sort out their conflicts between their old way of life and their new way. You appear to have such deep compassion for them. I felt your pain when Cephas died tragically. What a shame to have such a promising young man’s life come to such an abrupt end.
Watching this show has become such a learning process for me as well. There are so many things I did not know about the Amish. It seems so harsh for family to “shun” a member simply for going out into the “English” world. Even if they believe the person is wrong,Jesus said ” love the sinner,hate the sin”. God gave man free will,as evidenced by the Garden of Eden,which became Man’s downfall. Therefore, events happen that are caused by choices we make. Cephas,sadly,made the choice not to wear a seatbelt and to travel(most likely) far too fast. THis is what caused him to die,NOT some “pre-ordained” destiny.If Everything was preordained,why are we put on earth at all? My opinion is, shame on the Amish for condemning their young people,merely because they are curious in wondering what is out there in the world.God made Man with an intellect. If we were not meant to use it,then why did He give us one? It appears to me as if it is the Amish who are wasting their God-given intellects by rejecting knowledge,progress and participation in the world.
In closing,I applaud your heartfelt efforts to help these young people,who are most surely feeling guilty,bad and sometimes evil,because that is what their families are telling them. Perhaps you and the other young men can learn from Cephas’s tragedy and educate them on road safety and seatbelt necessity.
Mose/Shauna, Amos, Jonas, Gideon, and all those who miss Cephas and grieve over his loss – I’m sorry for your great loss. While we only know him from the show, Cephas was a wonderful young man with sparkling eyes and a beautiful smile. His dreams were inspiring as evidenced by the impact his passing made on Amos. May God hold you all close as your hearts heal. On another note, I cannot describe my feelings when reading about attending the funeral. God bless you all for showing your extraordinary love for Cephas by going into a difficult place. What a terrible shame that he was held up as an example of a false idea instead of honored by celebrating his life. No man knows the condition of another’s heart or their standing with God and salvation – that is between the individual and God alone. For another to “preach” that because someone did not do what others wanted him to do, then he was “lost” – what an offense to God.
My thoughts and prayers go out to you and the Ex-Amish community on the loss of Cephas, a truly remarkable man. When I found out about Amish:Out of Order I was surprised to learn about how the Ex Amish were able to make it in the english world. As the weeks have progressed I have loved getting to know all of your stories, and have felt like you are all a part of my extended family. When I learned of Cephas’s passing it was a huge shock filled with much sadness. I feel sorry for the Amish Preacher that used Cephas as an example for others in the community. Like Praying4u said, only God knows what is in a man’s heart. “For the Lord does not abandon anyone forever. Though he brings grief, he also shows compassion according to the greatness of his unfailing love.”
Lamentations 3:22-26; 31-32
While watching your show last night my heart sank as I learned that Cephas was killed in a car accident. My heart hurts even right now as though I’m mourning a close friend or relative. I admire the work you do with the young men who’ve left their Amish roots and families behind for a life in the English world. Your program is an inspiration to many not only the Amish. Watching your program each week I find myself connecting to each of you as if I know you on a personal level. I tune in each week just to see how far you’ve come since the last episode or situation you were dealing with the week before. May you continue the work God has placed upon your heart with even more determination to reach these young men and women with the guidance and direction they need. God bless you and may He fill the void left in your hearts & lives by the loss of a close and dear friend. (Deuteronomy 31:6 & Hebrews 13:5)
I felt deep sadness for all of Cephas family and friends. I want to say I am proud of you Mose and know that God is leading you to do many wonderful things. I continue to pray for you and your family. I admire the work you do and will be hugging my own children a little bit tighter tonight…
Praying for you all.
I did an article on the show and you all. I hope you find it encouraging.
shock. sadness. prayers. tears. hope.
wishing i could be there to offer some sort of comfort.
while this happened back in october, know that i will be praying for all of you, Amish and Ex-Amish, who have been impacted by Cephas’s passing.
gathering the Ex-Amish together in your home and viewing a video of him was such a beautiful thing, and then when people started opening up and sharing i couldn’t contain my tears any longer. such healing for each of you as you embrace one another in your grief and life each other up.
may the LORD continue to bless you and pour out His comfort on all of you.
Hugs from Alaska
enjoy the Nat Geo show so much and your continuing story…the death of Cephas was so unexpected just a sick sad thing I sat with my jaw dropped the whole show. You Mose have been an inspiration to my small life keep up the great work
Sincere condolences to your extended family at the loss of your friend. Your show has been very inspirational to me. Through sharing your past, you will impact the future. What a generous gift! I like to believe our purpose is written in the stars. Take comfort in knowing Cephas is shining down on you.
Dear Mr. Gingerich;
My condolences on the loss of your dear friend,beautiful Cephas Yoder. He will truly be missed but never forgotten.
I have enjoyed watching your show for weeks now, feeling so moved by your story as well as all the other young men, especially Cephas..he just seemed to have had an innocent beauty to him that touched me..I cried & cried during the whole show and have to admit that once the show ended, I, at first, felt angry. Angry that the show used his death to play on my emotions.Why let me become acquainted with this beautiful child weeks ago knowing then that he was dead? I was brokenhearted, why him? Dear God no not him! I calmed myself down and I prayed and I realized I had become emotionally invested in these young boys on your show. As a mother, I see these boys every week, shunned with no Moms to love them, care about them, worry about them. (I lost my Mother around that age so I know that kind of loss)and I guess I began to project a mother’s concern for them so after I prayed a bit I then thought about how his death changed Amos for the better & will ultimately influence so many ex-Amish and (God willin’) English kids in a positive way & I realized that sometimes God puts certain people in this world to teach others a bigger lesson. That’s why I think Cephas was taken now.The pain of his loss forces us to look at all his goodness and follow his ethics & dreams. And that’s why God made you the man you are today. To be the strong rock these boys so desperately need. Not to mentions an awesome husband and father. You’ve got a great future ahead of you. You’re a great man Mr. Gingerich. Happy Father’s Day
Thank you and Best Wishes to your family.
Mose, you are a loving, caring man with a wonderful ministry to the ex-Amish, every step you take you want only the best for your flock of ex-Amish. All are special but Cephas was little extra special as a result it hurts you so much to let him go but a piece of him will always be in your heart. The same with his all his friends, co-workers and viewers. Keeping you, your family and flock in my prayers..God Bless
Though I did not know him but what I saw of him on the show, Cephas seemed to be one of the true lights of this world. I can only hope my own son grows to be such an oustanding man.
“To live in hearts we leave behind
Is not to die.”~Thomas Campbell
I’ve watched this episode twice now, once last night and just got finished again. I’m so sorry for your loss. He did seem to be an amazing young man with a strong future ahead of him. I know you were all raised with “everything happens for a reason” and those words aren’t always of comfort. I’ve had so much death & awful things in my life & have learned that those things do come around to be used to the positive. You wouldn’t think that the absolute crap could turn into something good, but it can – really! I think you are doing such an amazing job in your community offering a positive change to the ex-Amish. I continue to be in awe of your efforts & accomplishments. May Cephus rest comfortably in God’s hands & may you be blessed in your continuing efforts.
You are truly an amazing man and I am saddened for the loss of Cephas. Please be at peace knowing he is watching over you. i feel, as the other commenters here, that I know you and all these gentlemen although it’s for a brief hour once a week. Prayers for you and all the people affected by this loss.
I echo many of the sentiments posted. My wife and I are avid viewers, and were deeply saddened and moved by the loss of Cephas. Such a wonderful young man with so much potential! May his soul rest in peace.
You do such wonderful work. May God bless you and your family!
So very sorry for your loss! I am also sorry that you all had to endure him being refered to so negatively at his funeral. I wanted to cheer when you all got together to remember such a fine young man.I belive with all my heart that our lives are a gift. I beleive they end when they do. I have never been able to find God in the logic of why someone lives or dies.I found god in celebrating the gift a good friend was! I found God in the faces and the tears of those too who share my loss. I think Cephas would want all of you to be happy and productive just like he dreamed to be. Most importantly he died knowing that he was loved by many. I promise to pray for your healing and comfort! Peace be with you all. Regards, Mark Newsted
God Bless Cephas, and all you beautiful young men and women of ex-Amish. This world is a lot less of a happier place with Cephas’ passing, but you all have an angel looking down upon you, and God has a hard working angel by his side in Cephas…Happy Father’s Day Mose
Mose, my new friend, Cephas may just have won that bet in a bit of a way. I might end up the owner of all of our hearts who love the show and your wisdom. I think he might also have a point, he didn’t need credit to get them. My heart goes out to your ocmmunity and am sending prayers that you all may have peace with the situation. Thank the lord for all of you.
That was “he might”. I apologize for the error.
Mose. I saw the episode last night, and just sat in shock. So saddened for your loss. It was so sad to hear how his passing was used as an example. Similar things were said in my strict church growing up, and I remember looking over my shoulder thinking God would strike me dead for the first few years I left. Even though I knew that wasn’t true, it was so ingrained in me, it was hard to not feel that way. My heart is saddened for your loss, and I pray none of the ex Amish kids are feeling the worry that it was somehow judgement. May you all feel God’s peace knowing that Cephas is living in his mansion (without using credit.)
My deepest sympathy for your loss, Mr. Gingrech. And I wholeheartedly echo Duke’s sentiments.
God bless you, brother.
So sorry to hear about your friend Cephas, Mose. He was only a year younger than my daughter. To lose someone at such a young age is tragic. But heaven has him now, and he is in safe hands….
I recorded yesterdays show and as I am currently watching the episode about the unfortunate death of Cephas Yoder, I am so emotionally touched by the news of Cephas Yoders death that I have been crying as if I personally knew this young man. What a beautiful young man, this truly is a tragic loss.
The angels are always near to those who are grieving, to whisper to them that their loved ones are safe in the hand of God. My deepest sympathy goes out to the family and friends of Cephas Yoder.
Mose Gingrech you are the shining beacon of hope for so many x-Amish,I am inspired by the steadfast devotion and compassion you and your spouse extend towards others.
Beautifully tasteful and touching, I am especially moved by your commitment to the x-Amish community.
Mose and the x amish, are starting to give me a since of life, i have been off in my life for some time now, the show and people on here give me hope for my own life, thanks. Yall are some very good people. You are giving me power, to be come a person agin and live life, never thought a show would give me hope and curage.
Loving thoughts go out to all who lost cephas yoder. God Bless You All!
Last night I saw the Amish Out of Order episode where Cephas passed away. I was stunned while watching as I hadn’t heard that this happened last year. I’ve become hooked on this show and it hit me like a ton of bricks when they said Cephas was killed. What a great kid with so much potential. Mose, you should be proud of the mentoring you gave him and the other ex-Amish kids. You’re like their guardian angel. And no matter how the Amish feel about it, I know that someone like Cephas is in paradise right now. No man-made edict can change that. Mose, make sure that Amos stays on track with his college dreams and stops driving crazy and fast! He’s another one with tons of potential.
I know Mose is always looking for new ways to help the ex-Amish community and build support networks. It almost sounds like you need to develop a de-programming program to counter the effects of the Amish dogma. Almost like a brainwashing reversal so these kids can cope and thrive in the outside (English) world and lose the built-in guilt and sadness. These are good people and they deserve to live free and with joy. Take care and good luck Mose!
Just finished watching Amish Out of Order and found out Cephas was gone. I had to turn the episode off yesterday when it was first revealed and finish watching it today. It made me very sad even though, of course, I didn’t know him. I have enjoyed watching this wonderful young man on previous episodes and was excited to see him bloom and grow! He had such big dreams and I am sure he would have achieved them. Cephas’ death should be a lesson to us all to take advantage of life and not waste it. He was very insightful and wise for a 19 year old. We could learn a lot from him and the way he was living his life. I know I learned a little something from him.
I really like that you got together to remember him and share your memories. Hopefully you all were able to heal a little easier after sharing your stories.
I am a very private person when it comes to religion, but I will publicly say this. WHEN I see Cephas in heaven, I plan to give him a big hug and tell him how wonderful he is.
Both my wife and I were very saddened to hear about Cephas. Like so many have said, “Why him?” I too think it was wrong of the Amish preacher to use him as an example of what happens when you leave the Amish. But one thing keeps gnawing away at me – he wasn’t using a seatbelt, and he might not have died had he been wearing one. It’s been a long time since I was a teenager (I’m 55 now) but I do remember that feeling of being invincible. I think you also mentioned that these young guys are really fascinated with cars, but can get in accidents easily because they have never driven a car before. Maybe they will think a bit differently and drive more cautiously in the future. Perhaps somebody else’s life will be saved because of Cephas. Who knows?
Anyway, you are doing a great job with these kids. I hope that God continues to bless you.
I knew someone had died and was dreading finding out who while watching the episode and was broken-hearted to learn it was Cephas. I wouldn’t want to learn of any of your friends dying, Mose, but Cepas had such hopes for the future and was such a positive person. I don’t know if he would have become a multimillionaire, but I know no one would have tried harder.
It’s beyond my understanding that the Amish minister made an example of Cephas during his funeral. A funeral should be a celebration of someone’s life. Nothing negative should be spoken about the person. Isn’t it bad enough they’re already gone? And Cephas was so young.
I will also never understand how the Amish could never speak about someone who passed after the day of their funeral. We should keep our loved ones alive by always remembering them in our hearts and conversations. I think you all did well my Cephas when all the Ex-Amish met to remember him. You were so right to hold that first meeting in your home. It’s what you need to do and you all did well.
I’ll pray for Cephas and his family. No matter what they might be showing (or not showing) on the outside, I can’t believe they aren’t hurting over his loss. Maybe I’m wrong, but I can’t imagine any parent not being painfully hurt at the passing of any of their children.
Thank you for the respectful way you showed the passing of Cephas. Good luck with the foundation in his name. I’ll be checking the link to find out more about it. God bless you and your family, Mose.
Very sad to have seen this young man pass away. It also saddens me to see all of the other people featured on the show who are NOT wearing a seatbelt. Please consider using some resources from Cephas’s Foundation to educate your community about this. As a nurse I have seen many people who did not survive a survivable accident or ended up with life-limiting brain injury because they were unrestrained. Thank you and God bless.
Mose, your ‘healing’ for those that loved Cephas was the correct and best thing you could have done. God bless you, my brother in Jesus Christ.
I can’t tell you how sad I was when I watched the show this week and found out that Cephas had died. I felt sick at my stomach and just started crying. What a beautiful and good young man he was. He will be missed, not only by those of you who knew him personally, but also by those of us who felt we knew him by watching your show.
Mose I would like to suggest to you that you create a FB Page for the Foundation. I really believe that with all your fans/friends and viewers of the show. That a FB Page would certainly have many “Likes” and “Shares” and would allow you to have maximum exposure for your foundation. All charites/foundations etc have FB pages now and I am cetain creating one for your foundation would assist you in doing the great things you are wanting to do in memory of this extraordinary young man. Of course you could also reach out to many as well. I am sure you know all of this and I know you already have a ton of FB pages that need your attention already. But just wanted to suggest it to your whenever you have the time (between your family, Sales job, book writing, blogs, FB Pages, helping the community, creating possibly another season of your show??). I reazlize how busy you must be. TAKE CARE and THANK YOU for what you are doing.
I am so, so sorry for your loss, and the loss of the ex-Amish community. My husband and I have been watching the show, and were so impressed by (and hopeful for) Cephas.
That the Amish preacher would use Cephas’ death as a teachable moment is disgusting to me. I can’t even begin to understand it.
I pray that you all can find some peace. Keep doing what you’re doing, Mose. You’re doing great things, and with such an amazing heart. God bless you.
Mose: I would like to volunteer to work with you on a website for the foundation. I designed and webmaster MatthewEdisonBremer.com. Take a look at that site to see my work. Let me know if I can help. Please.
If Cephas believed in Jesus and that He died on the cross for our sins; then he is in Heaven with our Lord. I will be praying for all who feel his loss.
Remember; It is God who judges us, not people!
All Have sinned and fallen short of the Glory of God!
Mose; read Psalm 91 for some comfort! Be Blessed!
Jesus said, “In My Father’s house are many mansions.” I think Cephas won the credit bet… he’s in a place where the streets are paved in gold and he lives in a beautiful mansion built by God Himself… and, he did it without credit. Maybe his dreams were so big, only in heaven could they be realized.
I watch your show every time I can, you know you are a real inspiration. What you are doing is so wonderful. I was raised christian, but people in the church are a lott similiar to those in the Amish community at times.
My children will not go to church now that their grown due to the judgemental attitudes of those in the christian communtity. You know God is the judge and its so sad that we have to deal with being judged by others when God loves us unconditionally.
Im sorry for what you have been through but thank God you have a loving wife and children who love you, and you make all the difference in life because your choice to be different!!! Im sorry about Cephas, and know he is in a better place and in the presence the the Lord.
I watch ‘Out of order’ every chance I get. I commend you for the work you are doing with these kids. Your work is a such a blessing to all those kids… and when I heard of Cephas’ passing; I cried and cried. My heart just ached for this brilliant young man who had such huge dreams and was working to achieve them. I’m glad you and all those in your community were there for him in life and in death. All of you are such an inspiration to me and remind me of my place in this world. Like you, my family shuns me for being different than who they are. Like you, I had to find my place in this world and learn to accept friends and now my husband as my chosen family. I am so glad to know that all of you are there for each other and to help one another. That is so critically important for these kids to know that there are others like them and that they are not alone.
I read that you are setting up some kind of foundation… Please do! I think that it would be a great help to the community as a whole. Even though I am not Amish, I feel a kind of kinship to the community and their journeys of self-discovery in this world. Keep me up to date on your foundation. I look forward to seeing your plans for it’s future.
Big Hugs to everyone from Northwest Arkansas!
I know what it’s like to lose a friend too soon. He seemed like a sweet kid. Praying for comfort for you and his friends.
Having an Amish background, of sorts, I have been very interested in the show, and have grown to love it. (Both of my parents were raised Amish. About 90% of my dad’s family is still Amish. My mom’s family left the Amish before my parents ever got married, they became Mennonite. About 50% of my mom’s family is still Mennonite. The rest of us are “English.” My parents left the Mennonite when I was around 3 years old.) Anyway, as I watched the show last night, I was sitting in the room by myself. When it came to the part where it said that Cephas had died I gasped out loud – I took myself by surprise. Shortly after that I found myself in tears. I kept wondering why it had affected me in that way. I lost my mom to pancreatic cancer 11 short days before Cephas’ car accident. Watching the funeral brought back some memories, so maybe that played a small part in the emotions I felt. But my heart was truly saddened for the loss of his young life. When you all were meeting in your house to watch the DVD, I found myself laughing and smiling at the things Cephas was saying – he was such a bright and likable young man. Something about him reminds me of my brother. Cephas just had a smile that made you smile. And his attitude toward life was inspiring as well.
Cephas could have been my grandson. There isn’t a mother alive who wouldn’t have felt proud and blessed to have had a son (or grandson) like Cephas. He SO touched my heart. I hope you’ll share this entire blog with his family. Shunning, which isn’t exclusive to the Amish, such a wonderful young man, I will never understand.
Shunned or not, I pray for his mother. There is no greater lifelong sorrow than losing a child.
I recently viewed the show containing the death of Cephas Yoder. He was such a charasmatic young man and showed his zest for life. I believe he would have achieved his dreams, especially since he was already buying a house. I do not share the Amish view that he went to “hell” because he was much too good. They always say only the good die young! Rest in peace Cephas. To his brother keep the dream alive.
R.I.P Cephas Yoder
The “EXAMPLE” left BY you in such a short time of your young life, will FAR EXCEED any “EXAMPLE” left out OF you. What a tremendous loss of a BEAUTIFUL spirit! To watch the tears that were cried, if LOVE alone could have saved you, you would have never died.
Thank you Mose for having shared him with us, and starting the foundation, such an incredible young man! He had “it”…hard to explain ALL of what “it” is, but just in the brief time on film, I have to say PERSONALLY it was a wonderful experience to witness someone with such a spirit. A bright light of hope, ambition, determination wrapped in love, kindness and humility….a perfect “EXAMPLE” of what any person should aspire to be like, myself for one. I’m so glad you decided to start a foundation. It will indeed be my honor to donate and support such fine, bright, ambitious human beings!! Thank you again Mose!
What a heartbreaking story … all I can say is SEATBELT … doesn’t seem like that matters now … just saying …
Cephas’ death broke my heart.
Sometimes things happen and our urge is to ask “why?”, but I’ve learned to not go there because it is usually a dead end. Rarely do you get a satisfying answer. Better questions are what (can I do?), who (can I help?), and how (can I be a blessing to others?). Sometimes pursuing what, who, and how gives me a glimpse of why.
But this was a familiar story: ex-Amish (or Amish heritage) kids possibly driving too fast and NOT WEARING A SEATBELT. We have the same problem here. I do not know how to get the message across, but speed + no seatbelt = high probability of death. A Mennonite 17 year old died here in Berlin, Ohio under those circumstances. I’m tired of mourning kids who died, but whose deaths were preventable with less push on the gas and a simple “click”. These kids are irreplacable.
Dates mean a lot to me. When I saw the date that he passed away I realized, I had just started a new job, had just moved out of my childhood home for good, and was starting a new life. I remember that particular day I began training for my new job at our head quarters in Lebanon, PA. I sat in a conference room all day, tired as heck, learning the ins and outs of my new job, my new life essentially. And to think that on this amazing new day in my life, another life was ending. Of course I didn’t know Cephas…but my heart breaks for him and those who loved him. Car accidents are terrifying and I thank my guardian angels who kept me alive during a few I’ve been in, one in particular on the Pennsylvania turnpike…I really to this day don’t know how I survived it, or how I made it out with only a small “paw print” bruise on my left arm. I could go on for hours on what I’m thinking and feeling about all of this. But I’ll just end by saying that this kid inspired me with his hopes and dreams. And with those beautiful eyes of his, I know he captured many hearts. God bless him <3
I cannot even begin to wrap my head around how much of a part of my life that you and those on the show have become. The shock and sadness I felt when learning of Cephas’ death sent my husband running in here worried sick that something had happened to our daughter. The baby monitor was on and he heard me gasp and start bawling. I am so sorry for your loss. I wish I could just hug all of you. Cephas, the stars are shining brighter now that you are among them.
I was truly saddened when I watched the show and learned of Cephas passing. But do know one thing…You will find your path and learn there is no heaven or hell.
There is nothing for you to go back and live over, or fix, or feel regret about now. Every part of your life has unfolded just right. And so – now – knowing all that you know from where you now stand, now what do you want? The answers are now coming forth to you. Go forth in joy, and get on with it.
This is the first time I saw the episode when Cephas passed. It’s now mid afternoon, my kids have friends over and there is hustle and bustle all around me. But I sit here on the couch frozen,heartbroken and in shock completely in my own universe of unbelievable swirls of thoughts. I believe Cephas is in heaven. I believe he is because my grandfather who raised me was is a nursing home for a week before he died. One night I had a dream that I went to visit him and he no longer had a broken hip,he was up and dressed in a suit(he wore one everyday) he said “don’t worry about me I am going with my friend now” and walked into the hallway which was lit up bright. I was quickly awoken by a telephone ring.3a.m. a nurse from the home said my grandfather had just passed. Though saddened I was okay almost prepared for a time being. I think everyday what could have been if only he were here,but then I remember what he said in that dream. I actually am having my third child a boy and actually concieved between Oct.17 and Oct. 23 baby due July 18 a boy. I have no middle name and was searching for one. It will be Cephas. Jolon Cephas.
That is beautiful Lisa. God bless your family and your soon to be born son, Jolon Cephas. =)
God bless you and keep you all. I pray for peace and comfort through this time. Grieving is something that we can all share.
“Anything that’s human is mentionable, and anything that is mentionable can be more manageable. When we can talk about our feelings, they become less overwhelming, less upsetting, and less scary. The people we trust with that important talk can help us know that we are not alone.” Mr. Fred Rogers
My thoughts and prayers are with you always.
Your friend in Christ Jesus,
I cried when I watched this episode. Truth be told I usually cry at some point in each episode. But this one really shook me up. I am not ex amish, however ex apostolic pentecostal. Shortly after my son had left the church he was in a horrible accident.While he was in the hospital the pastor was saying if he had died he would have gone to hell because he had walked away. I will never forget that. I am heart broken for you and the others that have left that the bishop took it upon himself to condemn you because you walked away.
Sorry my computer submitted befor I finished. Even though I was never amish I do understand about being shunned and condemned to hell because I walked away from “the truth”. While I love God and always have I still have a hard time walking into any church because of the things that happened to my children and myself.
I pray for you all. That God continues to draw you all closer together, and that you can continue to bring others out of the Amish life.
I also pray that someday your mom will understand what you have been through. I hope that comes befor it is too late. I didn’t have that chance with my dad.
I am so sorry to hear about Cephas. My daughter and I were sitting together watching the show when they showed how he died. My daughter’s comment, “Oh no! He was so hardworking and had his whole life ahead of him. Now it makes you wonder what he could have achieved with that life.” I agree with her in that Cephas had such ambition that I believe he could have gone far in his life. Again, we are very sorry for your loss and you are all in our prayers!
Mose, Good luck and God bless in all things, to you and your very special community out. Very sad seeing the episodes play out, then to see Cephas lose his life, when he just glowed with promise and a bright future. My condolences.
I have an Aunt, well she’s gone now God rest her soul, who was an ‘ex-Amish’. She was so kind and loving and sincere, and appreciated life and lived a long one. I don’t believe she’s now in Hell. Someone that good inside could never be sent to Hell simply for leaving the Amish. She was a beautiful soul and made a better man of my Uncle, and raised 4 sons who all went onto college and now are living life in a respectful manner and are beautiful men themselves, inside.
God doesn’t send people like my Aunt to Hell. I’m sure of this.
God bless and thank you for sharing with the world, what some might not know exists. I’m positive it’s helping many people out there to understand. :)
It’s pretty obvious that Cephas was no ordinary soul. I have only watched three episodes of your show and tonight when I watched the one about Cephas’ accident and death I was truly shocked and I cried. I believe that he was a gift from God. Look at all the posts on here and all the devastated people who didn’t even know him. All you had to do was see him and you knew in your heart that he was special. What a magnificent gift all that knew him personally were given. As sad as I am I can imagine that your sadness is a hundred times worse. Cephas wasn’t meant to be forgotten. I never knew him but I will never forget the impression he made on me. Thank you for sharing him with us.
I lost my brother at 19. He dropped off two friends before he got into an accident. The doctors tried for 6 hours to save him and he was pronounced dead at 0615 June 3rd 2003.
Doesn’t matter how much time goes by, or how many tears fall, you never lose that ache. But i know that he is smiling down at me, watching me, watching over my daughter. They are angels together. And I bet their both drving way to fast in Heaven. ;)
God bless you all.
After watching episode 10 all I can say is that I need 10 more episodes next season!
Your post on Cephas Yoder is extremely beautiful. Our family would like to extend our condolences to you and those who loved him. Even through the lens of a camera, Cephas exuded such confidence and sincerity that is truly inspiring. We commend you and the other ex-Amish for honoring him in a positive way. Unfortunately he left this Earth too soon, be his memory will live in the hearts of the lives he touched. Although we may not understand the struggles and triumphs you all face, we are rooting for you all to succeed. Our thoughts and prayers are with you all. May God continue to bless you all.
I watched the episode last night in which Cephas died, and I was struck by everything about him. He seemed like everything that can be good about people, including having a very strong work ethic, being kind to others, and being strongly goal-oriented. It was obvious how much his friends loved him and were devastated by his death. I felt very sad, and I never even met him.
Mose, you’ve done a great job here of summarizing your feelings about Cephas and the pain of losing him. I’m so sorry for your loss. And I’m especially sorry that his Amish family doesn’t grasp what a great kid he was, and instead they and their preacher used his funeral to condemn him. They should be ashamed of themselves…but somehow, I doubt they are.
While I have known of the death of Cephas, his death really hit hard watching the show. I cried so many tears for him. Everything that happens to us if God’s hand leading us. Good or bad, it was God’s will that Cephas be brought home to do his good work on the other side. I also remember my ancestors all of the time for they all had a hand in helping raise up wether or not they were with us, we cannot and must not bury them and “just forget” them. Cephas will live on in our hears and through the foundation that bears his name. God is guiding you Mose.
Hello Mose, as a big supporter of all of your work that you do with the ex-Amish (I really don’t like that word much).. but it’ll have to do. I am not a religious person whatsoever. The reason for this is that I see what Christianity does to people. Am I wrong for saying that? I know that God exists, but it seems that too many Christians in my life are such hateful, hypocritical people and still try to live the live of Jesus Christ while spewing hate and bigotry. I just don’t get it. The reason I am writing is because I am just devastated that Cephas was killed at such a young age. I don’t believe things happen for a reason, nor do I believe that God took him early for property in heaven or whatever. He drove carelessly and too fast. Period. I see and have heard many of those boys driving over 100mph and when Amos was recalling that story, my hurt sank into the ground. I know they’re young and all, but I hope the boys get a good grip on reality to see how important and dangerous driving can really be. Sure they drive horse and buggies most of their lives, but cars are powerful vehicles and will kill you dead. God didn’t have anything to do with. He is in heaven, because I know deep inside, God did see he had a good heart, was just beautiful to listen to. You are an amazing person Moses Gingrich. I watch the Hutterite show too and am amazed at the differences between the Amish and Hutterite people. I hope that you can bring these boys together to drive more safely. I couldn’t bear to hear about one of the others who have children now to be killed so young and so sudden.. I cried everytime I watched that episode and I am glad you took the time to plan a memorial and Christmas get together. God will bless you and keep you. I must commend your wonderful wife and family for supporting you in this very important mission. Please don’t ever stop.. All young people must have a good role model and you are perfect. If God planned anything, he planned for you to leave to be here for these boys. I wish you all the best and please send my condolences to Gideon. I lost my baby brother in 2004 to leukemia. The loss of a brother rips a hole in you that can never be mended. Again, never do I want to offend your Christian followers.. But I can’t believe this God would make us suffer so much if he loved us so much. I just don’t get it. Someone can help me understand. But until then, things happen at random. God Bless All of you…
I am so shocked and saddened by the loss of a wonderful young man that had his head on straight. I’ve become so attached to these kids it almost felt like he was one of my own.
I remember watching the episode for the first time, trying to wrap my head around why this beautiful young man had to leave this crazy place so early. I dreamed of taking a vacation and trying to get in contact with Cephas and Amos. Those boys, and all of them really, inspire me and remind me of how great life really is. I regret that I will never be able to meet Cephas, but I will remember him, and love him forever! Rest in Peace, Cephas! And give my grandma a hug for me. :)
This was by far the most moving show I’ve watched so far. Thank you for not letting this young man’s life go without recognition. While I cannot understand the Amish culture of grieving for such a short period of time, everyone truly grieves in their own way. It is inspiring that you led these group of people to remember Cephas in such a special way. You are a formidable presence in the lives of these young people. Even though we come from many different faiths, we are all truly on the same page with our relationship with God. It is true that when one door is closed, God will open a window. Keep bringing everyone together, Mose…that is what you are called to do. Never deviate from that path!
I am saddened by the loss of your young friend Cephas,while we dont know why things happen or have any answers for them God does. You were saying about how his family used him as an example, it is my belief that judgement is left for God, not man. I have visited Lancaster several times and read many books about the Amish and was facinated by the Amish life, after watching Amish Out of Order (which I love the show) I am realizing they have many man made laws and I pray for them because God is not the author of confusion and it seems that the young folks have a lot of confusion when they leave. I believe that you are a good example for these kids and that God put you where you are to mentor them. I for one appreciate the efforts you put into the show to tell it like it really is. God Bless all your efforts and everything you are doing. Looking forward to your book and the next season. Because of your dedication to honor your friend’s death, Cephas Yoder is a name that will be remembered.
Mose, May God comfort you and the family of ex Amish that surround you. God calls us home, Amish or not, we don’t know why.
I lost one of my best friends, 4 years this coming Aug. He was 39 and had a massive heart attack on his front porch. I rushed down to Joplin, we were all grew up, and stayed with his family for a week or two. He was going to the doctor for chect pains, the following Monday. Sadly, he didn’t live to see the doctor.
Know that our friends are smiling down on us from Heaven. We will all be together again some day.
No one who leaves us is ever really gone. Not only do we know we’ll see Cephas again in Heaven, but his memory will live on in the hearts of everyone he touched. And Cephas touched a LOT of hearts!
I watched the episodes of his accident with a heavy heart. I have to say I actually sat and prayed, “God, not Cephas.” He was really special; even people who never met him feel like they lost a friend. I wish I had magic words of wisdom to give you right now, but please know that the grief will eventually ease, but the good parts will stay with you.
Love and prayers from Gettysburg, PA.
I wish I would have met Cephas. His spirit that I saw on the show will abide with me for a long time to come.
Not much gets to me as I fear I have become too cynical and cold about life. Cephas got to me. His innocent love of life and determined spirit broke through those tall walls of mine. I was truly heartbroken to learn of his death. Thank you Mose for not letting him go “quietly into the night”. He should not be forgotten because he mattered and meant something to so many people. We should all hope to leave such a legacy. I have to believe that Cephas is in Heaven, because if he is not welcome there, than it’s not a place I want to be.
In just a few months it will mark the 1 year anniversary of Cephas’s death. Will you and his friends go back to the monument you made for a get together to celebrate his life?
We were so sad to hear of Cephas’ death. What a beautiful, spirited young man. What a loss for all of us. I once attended the funeral of a young mother’s untimely death. There everyone was reeling with shock and the unfairness of life. One of the speakers said the smartest thing I ever heard at a funeral. “Instead of asking, ‘Why?’ let us ask, ‘What now?'” All of Cephas’ friends can be grateful for their time with this special brother. We all can look at his life and take the lessons he taught us, if only his phenomenal exhuberance for life. One comment about the Amish and their shameful treatment of the passing of this precious soul–It strikes me as so strange that they claim to be so intensely religious, yet disregard one of Christ’s primary teachings: “Love one another as I have loved you.” The shunning of their precious children only demonstrates that they fail miserably in this charge from the Savior. Mose, I commend you for following the dictates of your heart by leaving the Amish and helping these young people make their way in the world. In my opinion you and Shauna are living that kind of love the Savior taught. –your sister
Dear Mose and all of Cephas’ friends and brother, Gideon,
I just watched the episode of Cephas death and how it touched all of you. I cried because of your personal loss and the loss of his presence in this world and what he might have achieved.
Kim Campbells’ post says it all when she reminds us of one of the primary teachings of Jesus Christ, “Love on another as I have loved you”. Mose, I believe that Cephas knew your love and the love of his brother and his friends. Surely the Lord loved him as well and I am sure that you all will see him again in heaven.
I will be praying for strength for you and all the boys in the community. We never forget those who truly touch our hearts.
Are accidental deaths God’s will? NO.
Here is the best illustration from the Bible that illness and accidental deaths are not from God and certainly not punishment for sin: In the time of Christ there was a tower near Jerusalem called the TOWER of SILOAM which fell and killed 18 people…In LUKE 13:4-5 the Disciples asked Jesus if they deserved to die because they were worse sinners than everyone else and He said no, this was NOT a punishment for sin. In JOHN 9:2-3 Jesus is asked if a man who was blind from birth was in this condition because he sinned or because of his parents’ sin and He again said no, this was NOT punishment for sin.
What a wonderful show. I enjoy ever second of this show. I am so sorry for the loss of Cephas’. He was way to young. He will remain in all of your heart’s forever.
I hope the show will return very soon looking forward to seeing all of you again.
GOD bless you all. May he get all of you through this heartache.
I am so terribly sorry to read about Cephas’s passing. I was just watching the show yesterday during the NatGeo’s marathon of your show there was Cephas talking about he was going to be a multimillionaire by the time he was 25 and I was thinking what an ambitious young man he is (now sadly reflect was)and I am just stunned to read that he is gone. I know many months have passed since the day of that tragic accident but I do know how close all of you are and how heavy your hearts must still be. You are all in my thoughts and prayers.
The episode about Cephas’ car accident just aired here in Montreal and I feel compelled to write something. I am not a religious person in the least but I think that if there is a heaven, Cephas is well deserving of a spot there. He seemed like a good guy with a big heart who brought a lot of joy to the people he came in contact with. I hope your community has been able to cope with the pain of losing such a great friend.
I too just saw this episode for the first time. Though I’ve only just begun watching this series, I was shocked and saddened by this tragedy. I truly wish you and your community nothing but the best. You are examples to everyone, Amish and English alike.
Just saw the episode today about Cephus Yoder passing away! RIP Cephus Yoder! Im Sorry for your Loss! My Condolences to Cephus Yoder’s Family and Friends.
Mose, my heart aches for you. I just saw the episode about Cephas. My heart just broke at the lose of that amazing, incrediblely special young man. 2 days later I still find myself fighting back the tears.
I agree with MerryLynne above when she says that Cephas won the bet. Sometimes our dreams are bigger than this world. God wants us to dream BIG! I belieave that Cephas’s dream went beyond achieving $2M at age 25. I belieave the bigness of his dreams came in what he purposed to do with that money and it was not for self-indulgence. His goal, I belieave, was to help his people the ex-amish. This is being realized by the foundation you have set up. I believe that his death was an accident, pure and simple, BUT that God will and is using that tragedy to fulfill Cephas’s dreams and vision he had for helping his people, the ex-amish.
As an ex-hutterite I feel for those young kids that leave and are disowned by their families and told that they will go to hell because they chose to leave the Amish Faith. The Hutterites believe the same thing BUT they do not disown you to that extend; you still can visit (with permission from the elders) the family members you left behind. The Hutterites will also shun or excommunicate a person who confesses Jesus Christ as their Lord and Saviour, especially if they also confess to be bapisted in the Holy Spirit. That is a BIG NO NO. This is another thing the Amish and Hutterites have in common.
As a born again, Holy Spirit filled Christian I want to let you and ALL those amazing kids that take that incredibly scaring step to leave, that they are NOT dammed to hell. The Bible says, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in ME shall NOT perish but HAVE everlasting life.” Take comfort and faith in God’s Word – He never leaves or forsakes anyone who calls on His Name. Even when we sometimes go astray God will NEVER EVER turn His back on anyone.
How are Amos and Jonas doing??
I had just turn my tv on to watch an episode of the show when I found out Cephes yoder had passed away almost a year ago no and it takes me back to When I was younger and I had gotten into an accited this just makes me realize even more that our time is coming some may be short and some may be long I be leave Cephes should not have been taken from this earth but I hope with all my heart that he is able to reach all of his goals and be with the ones he may have lost god bless his soul R.I.P Cephes I shall prey for those who are still greasing with is loss
i live in dixon, mo. i remember that day. i’m sorry
I just started to watch your program today. And thought what a great idea it would be if someone could start a foundation taking contributions and clothing to help these kids. I started searching and found this website. You are doing a wonderful thing. Do not thin for one minute that you are destroying the lives of those who choose to leave the Amish way of life. If anything I am glad to see that there is a person and place for these kids to go. A place to make a new start.
As for the passing of Cephas, I am sadden and blown away. What a great kid and a lot of courage. Please accept my sincere condolences
Wow, tragic … rest in peace. I saw this young man on television episode and how refreshing to see his spirit and ambition. His passing was an accident. Looking up the definition of accidentwhich states: An unforeseen and unplanned event or circumstance, often with lack of intention or necessity.There is nothing stated about heaven or hell’s fire. Be inspired by Cephas and pray for the sorrow of his mother. Even if she wanted to come and find or be with her son her husband would not have allowed it. So pray for his mom and syblings his death is a point of sorrow among other reasons it is probably being used as a misplaced instrument on God’s behalf by religious leaders within his family’s Amish community which in itself is tragic. The Lord Jesus Christ wants the best for his children and when his children exercise their free choice accidents, un planned events, happen … and thats all this was .. an accident .. nothing more .. rest in peace Cephas.
I stubled upon the show on Sunday and was glued to the TV for 7 hours. I was saddened when it was revealed that Cephas died in the car accident. He was an impressive kid. Driven to succeed in his new life outside the Amish. It’s sad that the Amish community reacts the way they do when one of tgheir own chooses to live a different life. I suppose that’s one of the reasons that the world is fascinated with Amish lifestyle. Regardless of what the teachings are, I’m sure Cephas is in heaven.
Over the years I have lost loved ones, my 4 month old nephew died from SIDS, my grandmother was killed in an auto accident, my dad died 6 months after being diagnosed with stage 3 stomach cancer. What I have learned is that there are no answers and looking for answers is a good way yo make yourself and everyone around crazy. Death is just death, no great mystery. I also learned that no one knows how to deal with death. It is simply something that each person must find a way to accept on their own terms. For me it is a reminder that I should love and appreciate those close to me, never taking them for granted, hold the good memories in my heart so that I never forget them and enjoy life. Losing someone doesn’t get easier it just becomes less painful over time so just laugh or cry with each memory because it is a reminder of how important that person was in your life.
he is loved by lots
Rest In Peace, Cephas Yoder. 1 Year ago today. It seemed too soon in life for you, but know you are missed and your memory lives on.
I haven’t seen the episode yet because I am watching it in re-runs. But, I am so sad to lean of Cephas Yoder’s passing.
Hi I am from Sydney Australia and my partner and I have watched every episode so far that has aired here in Australia… Tonight we learnt of the passing of cephas… My heart stopped and went out to all of you. I turned to my partner and said those beautiful blue eyes that had the world taken was way too young… We both know its been over a yr but we know the pain hasn’t eased… We send our love and prayers and wanted to let you know he touched our lives on the other side of the world RIP blue eyes xx
i have not missed a show of the amish. i have several books,obout the amish . every time i go to hutchinson ks, i stop at yoder ks the little amish community to see what is going on. they have a little gift shop, and we have bought their fresh butchered meat for 40 years. i love these people, they are doing things they learned as they grew up amish. you see i lived in a small town six miles away, so what they feel and do is their way of life is ok with me. mose , you have a gift of writing, i enjoy all of it. may you be blessed, and god speed.
i will add to my comment, lost my husband, –had to go into survial mode, make decisions, mose what you are questioning,is the english life, we all have trying days where we want to give up and wonder if this is all there is. well i think (my opinon) god only lets you handel the load you can carry. im not a good writer but there it is . looking forward to your book!
Still missing Cephas. What a tragedy. Rest in peace, Cephas. Rest in peace. God willing I’ll get to meet you on the other side.
I will be honest I have never seen your show until here on Netflix and you have portrayed your journey is a respectable manner for reality TV…but I had to find your site on this episode…I know now it’s been a long time but I am heart broken to tears on the loss of your friend. He seemed remarkable and driven, I had looked forward to see him working on his house and if he made his millions. What a great loss for you and your friends but most of all for the world…again I am truly sorry.
I’m captivated and intrigued by the life post-Amish – then stunned by the unnecessary, untimely death of sparkly-eyed Cephas! After watching most of the shows, I have noticed that the ex-Amish do not wear seatbelt and drive too fast. I do hope that the lesson from Cephas’ death is to driver responsibly (and it is in no way a punishment for his faith).
You, Mose, are the gatekeeper and enable these ex-Amish people to purchase vehicles (even co-sign). As a mother with a new teen driver (who has been in 1 accident already), it is imperative that new drivers understand that wearing a seatbelt is NOT optional! Most teens get in car accidents (they are learning after all)and what prevents death or serious injury is wearing a seatbelt. I am broken hearted that a young man with high aspirations and a genuine love of life, had his life snuffed out unnecessarily. Please please remind teenagers to wear seat belts and drive responsibly before more people are killed on the road.