Jill Duggar & Derick Dillard Preach About Importance of "Covenant Marriage"

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It's been less than two years since Jill Duggar and Derick Dillard got married, but apparently the couple has spent much of that time doling out marital advice to other couples.

Jill and Derick Dillard in El Salvador

The Dillards moved to El Salvador to perform missionary work not long after their son Israel was born, and now we know more about the exact nature of the work they're doing in Central America.

It seems the couple is advising other young married or engaged folks in two different ways:

Derick gives regular sermons at their local church, and he and Jill both meet with men and women who are seeking advice or having trouble in their relationships.

The Dillards are in a "covenant marriage" - a type of union offered in three states (including their native Arkansas) that makes it very difficult to obtain a divorce.

The legal details vary from state to state, but usually, under the terms of a covenant marriage, a divorce can be obtained only if one partner commits adultery, abuse or a felony.

Generally, even in those cases, the couple must live apart for a minimum of one year before they can begin divorce proceedings.

El Salvador doesn't offer legally distinct covenant marriages, but apparently the Dillards encourage those they're counseling to treat their marriages like one.

Sources say Jill and Derick often remind those considering divorce that "love is unconditional" and that they'll remain married "in the eyes of God" even if they obtain a legal divorce.

Their stance could prove problematic as Central America has an extremely high rate of domestic violence.

There are, no doubt, many cases in which divorce is the safest option, even if the abuse hasn't occurred yet.

It is unknown if Jill and Derick have counseled any victims of spousal abuse, but they may have done so without being aware of it themselves.

Just one of the many reasons why it could be dangerous to preach the idea that God punishes those who seek divorces.

Watch Jill & Jessa: Counting On online for more of the Dillard family's life in El Salvador.

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