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The Seeker is a lyrical portrait of an excommunicated Amish woodworker struggling with spirituality, poverty, and life as an outcast from his strict, insular community.

Director’s Statement: Lance Edmands

Kenneth Copp is a fifty-seven-year-old furniture maker who lives on a small farm in rural Maine. He spent decades of his life in old-order Amish communities, living according to the strict word of God. He dresses in plain fabrics, uses workhorses to pull his buggy around town and to power the equipment in his workshop. He married young and fathered ten children. But about five years ago, plagued by existential questions he couldn’t answer, he began to doubt his fundamentalist religion. He started looking deeper at science, secretly researching Darwinism behind locked doors. 

Copp soon discovered that his strict community did not accept his newfound curiosity for science and rational thought. He was shunned from the Amish church, unable to communicate, do business, or receive any support from the community. His wife left, taking the children with her. Today, he lives alone, surrounded by the Amish from his former congregation. He lives below the poverty line and relies on the kindness of others to scrape by. He makes furniture that he sells locally but struggles to square his commitment to sustainable craftsmanship with the ability to turn a profit. 

Regardless of these struggles, Copp maintains a humanistic view of the world. He is committed to living in harmony with nature. His radical, individualist perspective is incredibly unique, driven by an ongoing quest for greater understanding about what it means to live in accordance with your beliefs.

  • Year
  • Runtime
    18 minutes
  • Language
  • Country
    United States
  • Premiere
  • Director
    Lance Edmands
  • Producer
    Kyle Martin, Sarah Tihany
  • Cast
    Kenneth Copp
  • Cinematographer
    Matt Mitchell
  • Editor
    Conor McBride
  • Music
    Sarah Lynch