Jill Duggar (second eldest daughter of Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar) prepared to tie the knot with fiance Derick Dillard at a large rehearsal dinner on Friday.
More than 100 people were on hand to help Jill, 23, and Derick, 25, rehearse for their big day, according to People. (Jill is the first daughter of the “19 Kids & Counting” family to get married.)
Volunteers helped prepare food for the reception (over 2,000 guests are expected at the wedding on Saturday!), and put up decorations, the mag reported.
The tears were flowing during the rehearsal.
“I’ve been crying half the day, so I’m making jokes to keep from crying,” Jim Bob told the group.
He also asked for prayers for Derick’s mother, Cathy, who is fighting cancer and was not well enough to attend the rehearsal.
Derick also asked for prayers for his mom and pushed a wheelchair down the aisle during the rehearsal, in hopeful anticipation that she will be able to attend the wedding, according to the mag.
Derick popped the question to Jill on March 29 during a walk in the park as Jill’s sisters – Jana and Joy – accompanied them. Jill’s sisters began to lag behind on the group’s walk and Derick had arranged for a singer to serenade them.
“By the second verse, I knew the song was about Derick and me,” Jill told People at the time.
The song then led to a group of musicians showing up and Jill’s groom-to-be dropping to one knee.
“I shared how much I loved her, how I couldn’t imagine life without her, and I asked her, ‘Will you marry me?’” he recalled of the proposal, where he gave her a .63-carat diamond and white-gold ring that he designed.
Jill and Derick are taking the intimate part of their relationship slowly. In fact, they only just held hands for the first time on the day of their engagement.
“We decided to wait to hold hands until we were engaged,” she explained. “And to have our first kiss on our wedding day.”
-- Erin O’Sullivan