Christian actress Candace Cameron Bure has defended a Maryland bride who presented her father with a "certificate of purity" signed by her doctor during her wedding reception as a way to prove that she maintained her virginity until marriage.
Twenty-two-year-old Brelyn Bowman, who pledged to God when she was 13 years old to remain celibate until she got married, was one of the topics of discussion on Thursday's episode of ABC's daytime television talk show "The View."
Bowman, who posted a picture Instagram last week from her wedding that featured her posing in her weddings dress with her father, who's a pastor, holding the purity certificate has become the center of a social media storm.
As Bowman's life choice has drawn criticism and mockery by many online, Bure, who stars in the upcoming Netflix show "Fuller House," was much more supportive of Bowman's celibacy than her co-hosts on "The View."
As the world today has become secular, now the idea of premarital sex is less taboo than it once was. However, Bure explained that there are many in society today that hold onto their virginity for decades as a testament to their faith.
"There are a lot more virgins out there than people realize. I have a lot of girlfriends, and know of guys, that are in their 30s that still have their virginity," Bure said. "It's not a surprise to me, but that's also the types of friendships and groups of people or people within the church communities. So it's very familiar, so it is not shocking to me."
Co-host Joy Behar quipped that she thinks maintaining virginity through the 30s and 40s is "a little bit much."
"Who is anyone to say?" Bure replied. "This is really about a relationship between them and wanting to honor God."
"I don't know that I would have posted that on Twitter," Bure continued. "But I think she was honoring her mother and father, wanting to keep that promise to them as she goes on to her husband."
Bowman told ABC News that she wanted to give her father, Mike Freeman, the certificate as a way of honoring him and God, since her sister did the same thing during her wedding.
"The decision came from honoring God and honoring my father," Bowman said. "He was very excited and it's like a child and they bring home a progress report."
Bowman's husband, gospel singer Tim Bowman Jr., also abstained from sex until marriage.
"We're strong in what we believe that sexual purity is the way to go," Tim Bowman told ABC News. "We're honoring God and we took that one step further."
Bowman said she didn't intend on criticizing others who don't wait for marriage to have sex by posting her picture to social media but did hope it would spark a discussion.
"Our whole message is not to condemn anyone," Bowman asserted. "We believe God will restore you and ... we can cut down rates of HIV and STDs."
Before going to commercial break on "The View," Bure explained her favorite part of Bowman's story.
"I really love that the dad has two other children, another daughter and a son, and his other daughter kept her virginity before marriage and the son did not. The dad said, I love all three just the same. It's not about what they did for me but rather, what they did for themselves," Bure explained.
After Bowman realized she was featured on "The View," she posted a screengrab to Instagram with the hashtag "#makejesusfamous."
Bowman had also posted a picture of her and her engagement ring to Instagram over a month ago that featured the words "I got a ring without giving up my *ting."