The Duggar family is an endless source of fascination for most people, given that their lifestyle is so radically different from most Americans. But they are religious, so the family might share some traditions with other church-going people. Like, do the Duggars baptize their kids or does their faith not call for that religious sacrament?
According to the Duggar family blog, the family is Independent Baptist, which does baptize congregants. According to the Independent Baptist Connection, baptism involves the complete submersion in holy water with a pastor around to say some scripture, much like other Christian religions do. However, as Got Questions — a site dedicated to answering questions about the bible — Independent Baptists, often also known as Independent Fundamental Baptists "reject infant baptism and sprinkling" and "baptism is only appropriate after someone comes to faith in Jesus."
In other branches of Christianity, such as Catholicism, baptism is typically done when a child is still an infant. But within other Baptist denominations, it typically happens later in a child's life, when they are mature enough to understand its meaning. "The normal age of baptism should be when the credibility of one’s conversion becomes naturally evident to the church community," Capitol Hill Baptist Church explains.
As for the Duggar children, eight of the kids, along with Jim Bob and Grandma Duggar, were re-baptized in 2011 when they went on a family trip to Israel, according to Hollywood Life. However, information on when they were first baptized is not readily available.
Given that the family is so focused on children and celebrating the birth of new kids so publicly, it's a bit puzzling that there's not more information about their baptisms easily available online. Although, they do tend to be a little more private about the ins and outs of their worship. According to a blog by a woman who claims to have attended church service with the Duggar family before, they go to a really tiny church. "At this time, they are meeting in an empty store front type place. The inside is very simple," she wrote in the blog. "Concrete floor, mismatched seating, paper plates for bathroom signs, broken podium...we love it!!!"
The woman — who Christian magazine Crossmap identified as "a blogger whose family attends church with the Duggars" — added that there's not even a designated preacher. "Certain men in the church will share something that God has put on their hearts. Other times, there might be a special speaker or missionary." The blog adds that "the church has three elders, one of which is Jim Bob Duggar." So if there are baptisms happening, it's possible that Jim Bob participates in some way with other parishioners outside of his family.
Then again, for other events, such as weddings, they have gone to other churches. For Jill and Derick's wedding, for example, they invited almost a 1,000 guests to Cross Church in Springdale, Arkansas, a Baptist church that specializes in conversion and missionary work, according to People. But the "home church," which doesn't take a government tax exemption, according to the anonymous woman's blog about their church, is their home base.
Baptisms are often more intimate affairs, and it would be a whole different thing if they rented out a church for one like you'd do for a wedding. However, according to the Duggar Family Fan Blog, they tend to return to Cross Church for larger events.
The Duggars told BeliefNet that when they signed on to do the show, they were adamant that the network not cut out their faith or breeze over it, which TLC certainly didn't do. However, it's not often we get to see exactly how the family worships or partakes in their religious traditions, aside from weddings. But if you're wondering whether the Duggars baptize their kids, all signs point to "yes," although it's not clear when exactly that happens in their family. But maybe one day they'll share pics on social media for fans.
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