Jill Duggar Dillard and her husband, Derick Dillard, revealed that they have a “heart for ministry” early on in their relationship. While the pair are not certified missionaries, they have spent a considerable amount of time abroad. Fans of 19 Kids and Counting and Counting On will remember that Jill went to visit Derick while he was doing missionary work in Nepal, and the couple spent some time in Central America also doing missionary work.
The couple is now back in Arkansas working on a ministry to bring college kids closer to Jesus, and have gone with their new home church to preach to those in Mexico. However, Jill Duggar Dillard was met with criticism, according to The Hollywood Gossip, because of the danger she is putting her son Samuel in by taking him along for the ride.
Jill Duggar Dillard and Derick are taking their infant son with them to Guadalajara, Mexico, which has many fans up in arms because of the dangerous nature of the region. The Hollywood Gossip reports that last month, the city had 23 murders in just 48 hours, and that missionaries could end up being targets of these crimes. Jill often expressed the danger she and Derick faced living in Central America on Counting On.
The pair likely took Samuel with them because Jill is still breastfeeding, as Keeping Up with Fundies reports, so she can’t be away from him for too long. They also guessed that their older son, Israel, was with either Derick’s mother, Cathy, or Jill’s mother, Michelle Duggar.
Fans, however, felt that this was a poor decision on her part. Fans also criticized the pair for staying in a Zika-infested region while Jill was pregnant with Samuel, as there were particular warnings set for women who were expecting children. Jill, however, blatantly ignored them and continued to live in the country while pregnant. It is not known if Samuel suffered any complications related to Zika, or if Jill was ever diagnosed with the illness.
The pair have also faced harsh criticism for asking money from their fans to go on these mission trips, which some feel they are not qualified to go on.