‘Counting On’ Star Joseph Duggar Announces He’s Officially Courting Kendra Caldwell

“Nope, sorry, it’s still not Jana that’s courting…”

Another day, another Duggar kid courtship…but this time, it’s one of the Duggar sons edging closer to the altar, instead of a daughter!

The Duggar Family announced today that Joseph Duggar (who is the seventh-oldest of Jim Bob and Michelle‘s 19 children) is officially in a courtship with Kendra Caldwell.

In a video released on Wednesday by TLC, Joseph tells Counting On fans that he is “very excited” to announce that he’s courting Kendra. The couple– who are both dressed in plaid for the video– met in church.

“We’ve been talking for about six months and whenever we started talking, we really hit it off really well,” Joseph says as Kendra looks fondly at him. (She’s already perfected the Duggar bride googly-eyed stare!)

“Our interests and the things that we stand for, we’re both ready for the next step of courtship,” 22-year-old Joseph adds.

Kendra says she’s already on-board with the Duggar courtship rules.

“I’m looking forward to the side hugs and phone calls and texting and also getting to do ministry stuff together, out in public with everyone knowing that we’re courting,” she says.

Joseph reveals that he gave Kendra a promise ring, which he says signifies his promise to wait for marriage before getting physical in their relationship.

Kendra, who looks terrified throughout the whole video, says she’s excited to allow fans to watch their courtship journey on the next season of ‘Counting On,’ which premieres this summer.

So who is Kendra Caldwell? From what The Ashley can gather, she is daughter of Paul Caldwell, who is the pastor of the Lighthouse Baptist Church in Fayetteville, Arkansas. Kendra, who is 18, is the oldest of seven children. (Paul once ran for State Representative in District 90 in Arkansas but lost. He was endorsed by the Duggar family, including a pre-scandal Josh Duggar.)

Kendra and her sister, Lauren, were seen helping to prepare decorations during the Jinger Duggar wedding episode of ‘Counting On,’ and it’s been rumored that another Duggar boy is currently courting Lauren. (However, the Duggars have not confirmed that any other boys are in courtships currently.)

Both Kendra and Lauren were reportedly in attendance at the Duggar Family Valentine’s Day party last month.

Currently, there are four single Duggar boys that are of courting age: John-David (age 27), Josiah (age 20), and 18-year-old twins Jedidiah and Jeremiah. Joseph’s little sister, 19-year-old Joy-Anna, recently announced her engagement to Austin Forsyth, so she will be getting married shortly.

Watch the courtship announcement video below:

(Photo: TLC)


  1. Why do all these girls always look at the guys like this? Are they not allowed to look anywhere else? I find it quite sad

    1. I hear people commenting about this a lot but to me it just seems respectful to look at the person who is speaking. And why wouldn’t you want to look at the person you’re in love with? I love looking at my husband!

    2. It’s part of their religion’s misogynistic propaganda bullshit, “7 Basic Needs of a Husband” that they insist is what saves marriages but really is extremely sexist to the point that it makes me physically nauseous that they make girls read this. In bold it says, “LOOK AT YOUR HUSBAND ADMIRINGLY WHEN HE TALKS TO OTHERS, IT INSPIRES THEIR RESPECT.” Absolutely disgusting. There’s also “7 Basic Needs of a Wife” that essentially calls us “weak” during our period. This is REAL stuff that these folks live by and if you’re in for a good cry feel free to google it.

      1. forgot to mention that their religion also encourages marital rape…”Resistance or indifference to your husband’s need for physical intimacy is the unspoken crushing of his spirit.” (7 basic needs of a husband).

        Just a reminder…we give these people a platform to share their disgusting values by continuing to watch their show.

      2. Thank you for confirming that I always found it quite odd and definitely one sided I wouldn’t have commented if I had noticed the men looking at the women the same way

  2. I can just see JimBob/Michelle in that spooky courtship office telling John David for the 100th time…No, John David, you cannot court Jana! It’s a ding dang sin!

    1. Aww. To be fair, twins have a special connection. For all we know, these two may be completely traumatized by the lifestyle they grew up in. If we are freaked out by things we hear, imagine how they may feel living it.

    1. Awesome! 🙂 The world needs more people who will speak the truth! Good on the Caldwells.

  3. Part of me just wants to shake this girls and tell her to run. But she probably shares his backwards beliefs. So at least they are just breeding with other fundies and stay the hell out of kids potential gene pool

  4. And one more thing! I think anyone coming into that family is terrified! They didn’t live with cameras like they did! Ben still has issues! Anna looked very uncomfortable when she was first on camera! I just think it’s being nervous!

    1. I had another comment! I guess that didn’t go through! Basically it said I feel sorry for the kids! It’s like everyone is out to kick them when they r down. Not condoning the whole Josh thing or their courtship weirdness! And the baby making! I say let them do their thing if they r happy! Especially the kids! Not their fault!

    1. I think she’s cute! She’s super young and is clearly shy/uncomfortable with being on camera, so I think those are factors. But I think she’s cute 🙂

      1. I think she’s adorable. The sad part is that she’s clearly sheltered, young, not “worldly” and being thrust in front of a camera as the newest potential flat back name bearer of a cult

    2. I think she’s cute, but she’s so young. I don’t even know her, but I want her to have the chance to experience life before she’s married off and becomes a Duggar baby making machine.

  5. It seems that everyone wants to accuse them for making another announcement for the benefit of the show, so I’m going to play devil’s advocate. I don’t see it as being done for the purpose of ratings, although I admit I don’t know their motives because I don’t know them personally. However, in my opinion, with 19 kids (and basically one per age from 6 – 29 or whatever), it makes sense that a lot of them would begin dating/courting, getting engaged, getting married, and having babies back-to-back. First of all, if you think about it, you may know families whose kids are 2-4 years apart who all hit milestones of that nature (first bf/gf, etc.) when they were the same age; it just happened a few years apart because of normal family age gaps. Announcements keep coming because these kids are all one year younger than the next, and because there are so many of them. Secondly, of course, when one of them starts courting, it’s a fast track to an engagement and marriage and babies due to their beliefs; regardless of the TV show, I’m sure they’d make this all a short process. (I’d probably have a ten minute courtship and one week engagement, too, if all of my dates were chaperoned by my pre-teen siblings.) Despite their bizarre rules for dating and beliefs on child-bearing, I do hope they aren’t choosing their spouses for the wrong reasons.

    1. I’m going to meet you more than halfway and mostly agree. I’ve been saying something similar to this when Jill and Jesse were courting/getting married about the same time, and that was PRE-Josh Duggar scandal/19 Kids and Counting getting cancelled. So I’m with you: most will be courting in their late teens/early 20s because of their belief system and there’s a ton in that bracket now, as well as a few coming up soon. However, I do wonder if they’re being more pressured to court and get married than before because it keeps them in the news/helps ratings. And, they don’t use birth control so I doubt having kids is for ratings because that is how that family rolls.

  6. Well, of course. With all his older sisters getting married, he had to find someone else to do his laundry and cook for him. Living at the Duggar house isn’t the same since all the servants…oops! I mean women started to leave.

    1. Wasn’t he one of the boys who gave an interview and was genuinely terrified at the idea that they had to go to the grocery store…? lol I’d tell this girl to run!

  7. HAHAHAHA I figured it tho. Now that Joy’s getting married and Jill is pregnant, there were no more news from this family. I expect Jinger’s “little announcement” soon.

  8. She looked like she was reading what she was saying. Do they not trust women to think? I wish they’d take all these people off TV.

  9. Them duggar boys got hit hard with the ugly stick they’re like little Jim Bob lites with slightly less hair. It’s also not good that they resemble pedo brother Josh.

    1. Elle, I was thinking the same thing. All of the boys are ugly, have bad acne, and a severely receding hairline. They have that “duh look.”

    2. It’s so odd because the Duggar girls tend to be cute. I think there is one son who favors Michelle more than Jim Bob and has potential. I want to say it’s Jason, but who can keep track?

  10. Yikes. When will this family just shut up and live their shitty cult life in private and stop milking all their fucking kids for everyone they’re worth?

  11. Well, yeah. They’ve got to keep that courtship- engagement- marriage cycle going to keep people watching. Jinger got married, Joy is engaged, time to announce another courtship.

    1. And it had to be one of the boys before all the girls move out and they have to learn to make tater-tot casserole themselves.

      1. And besides Jana, there’s no girls left old enough to marry off. At least there’s less cooking and laundry for Jana as they all start leaving home.

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