Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar have cancelled an appearance and speech at a Colorado homeschooling conference this month, citing recent “attacks” on their family stemming from revelations that their eldest son Josh had molested five young girls — four of them his sisters — beginning back in 2002.
The 19 Kids and Counting couple were previously promoted as speakers at the Rocky Mountain Super Conference on the Family put on by the Christian Home Educators of Colorado (CHEC), the largest home schooling organization in the state with over 10,000 families as members.
The CHEC issued a statement to their members this week announcing the Duggar’s withdrawal from the event.
“By God’s Providence, CHEC just received word that Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar have decided not to come and address the 2015 Rocky Mountain Super Conference on the Family. This latest change comes in light of recent and increased attacks and pressure on the family. They have graciously requested to withdraw entirely from speaking at this year’s conference and therefore will not be appearing at the Friday evening event on June 19th.”
Previously the CHEC had stated that the Duggars would attend but would not address the on-going scandal that caused the TLC network to pull their highly-rated reality show off the air. In a statement, the CHEC said the couple “humbly desire that the evening be focused on how the Gospel has penetrated their lives and given them hope in the trials that Christian families face.”
The Duggar’s have forgone all public appearances since their exclusive interview on Fox’s The Kelly Files with Megyn Kelly.
The TLC network has yet to make a decision on the return of the 19 Kids and Counting, as well as any spin-off shows starring any of the Duggar children.
Earlier this week “Mama” June Shannon, formerly of TLC’s Here Comes Honey Boo Boo, ripped the network for not cancelling the Duggar’s show, saying, “What Josh did and what happened to the Duggar family was a whole lot worse than what we were doing. I didn’t cover up anything, I was honest from the very beginning.”
Honey Boo Boo, was cancelled hours after Shannon was accused of dating a convicted child molester even though she continues to deny the allegations.
Shannon said she believes the network is coaching the Duggar family through the crisis, hoping to salvage the hit show.