The Duggars are known for acting speedily when it comes to matters of love and marriage, but second-oldest son John-David Duggar has set a new record.
The 28-year-old has announced that he is engaged to his girlfriend, 26-year-old Abbie Grace Burnett, just a month after the pair began their courtship in late June.
‘We are thrilled to announce the engagement of John-David and Abbie!’ the Duggar family said in a statement on their website. ‘They are a wonderful match and make a beautiful couple!’
Speedy! John-David Duggar, 28, has announced his engagement to Abby Burnett, 26, a month after they started dating
Pairing up: Upon entering the courtship, John-David joked that he had ‘reconsidered the whole “bachelor ’til the rapture” thing’
The statement continued: ‘Abbie is a lovely young woman, full of tenderness and compassion. She has a deep love for the Lord and we are so delighted that John-David has asked her to be his wife! We love weddings in this family and can’t wait for this next one!’
The couple only began their courtship a month ago, making for speedy turnaround to get them to the altar.
The Duggar family abides by strict rules when it comes to dating and relationships with the opposite sex. Rather than ‘dating’ as most people do, they ‘court’, which they explain as ‘dating with a purpose’.
Typically, when Duggar enter a courtship, it is an official trial period to see whether they should get married. As with marriage proposals, the men in the family ask permission of the women’s parents before asking to enter a courtship.
No fooling around! The lovebirds knew each other for a ‘couple months’ before entering a courtship, which in the Duggar family means ‘dating with a purpose’
No touching! The Duggars have strict rules for dating, and John-David and Abbie will share their first kiss on their wedding day. They are only allowed to hold hands and give side-hugs
John-David and Abbie only knew each other for a couple of months before they began courting.
In a video released online at the announcement of their courtship, John-David explained that they’d known of each other for quite some time before actually meeting.
‘Abbie and I are just so excited. We’ve known of each other for several years, but we didn’t meet ’til …’ he began, before Abbie finished: ‘John flew in for a church event here in Oklahoma where I’m from. We really got connected then.’
‘Yeah, a couple months ago,’ John-David went on. ‘We fell in love very quickly. And it’s been a wonderful journey thus far and taking the next step to move onto a courtship.’
‘A lot of prayer, a lot of counsel, a lot of time together,’ added Abbie.
Scandal! Some fans wonder if they broke the rules, though, after Jill (far right) posted this picture saying she ran into them — but didn’t mention a chaperone
Another one down! John-David’s engagement brings the total number of attached Duggar children to eight
While they’re certainly moving fast, other Duggars who’ve said ‘I do’ have also taken things quite quickly. John-David’s little brother Josiah, 21, popped the question to his now-wife Lauren Swanson, 19, after a six-week courtship.
Josiah and Lauren had known each other for about three and a half months before their courtship began, and were engaged for just four months before their wedding on June 30.
John-David’s engagement brings the total number of attached Duggar children to eight.
Of those age 20 and over, only John-David’s twin sister, 28-year-old Jana, remains single.
As members of the Duggar family abstain from sex before marriage — as well as kissing and even front-facing hugs — they tend to have quick engagements.
First look! Josiah Duggar married his 19-year-old bride Lauren Swanson on June 30
Muah! The two shared their first kiss moments after being declared husband and wife
New parents: Jinger Duggar, 24, and her husband Jeremy Vuolo, 30, became parents to a healthy baby girl named Felicity Nicole Vuolo last week
Mandate: All of the adult Duggar children age 20 and up have paired off so far except for Jana, 28 (far right)
In fact, until they are married, all dating or ‘courting’ adult children are expected to have chaperones with them on all dates. Sometimes, younger siblings even serve as chaperones.
Interestingly, however, fans of Counting On suspect that John-David and Abbie may have broken those rules during their courtship after John-David’s sister Jill posted a picture of the trio on Instagram.
‘Ran into these two last night!’ she captioned the photo, without mentioning anyone else being there — leading fans to wonder whether the two adults had been out without supervision.
Once they are married, John-David and Abbie will likely follow in the footsteps of John-David’s siblings and start having children immediately.
Women in the family are expected to have as many children as possible. Matriarch Michelle Duggar, who has had 19 children, has spoken out about not believing in birth control.
More milestones: Joseph and his wife Kendra Duggar welcomed their first child in June, a boy named Garrett who arrived nine months after they got married
New member: Kendra struggled through labor, with the whole thing being captured by TLC’s cameras
Teen mom: Joy-Anna Duggar, 20, gave birth to her first child at 19, with husband Austin Forsyth
Baby machines: Jessa Duggar and her husband Ben Seewald have two children so far
First wife: Jill Duggar, the first Duggar daughter to get married, also has two kids
She blames a miscarriage early in her marriage on that fact that she and Jim Bob initially used birth control after saying ‘I do’.
Eldest sibling Josh Duggar, 30 — who confessed to being a porn addict and was found to be philandering in the wake of the Ashley Madison hack — has five kids with his wife Anna.
Jill, 27, and Jess Duggar, 25, have two kids each, while Jinger, 24, and Joy-Anna, 20, each have one child so far.
Joe Duggar, 23, just welcomed his first child with Kendra Caldwell, 19, while Josiah, 21, married last month.
The other adult children who remain single are Jedidiah and Jeremiah, both 19, and Jason, 18. The youngest sibling is Josie, eight.