Zach and Whitney Bates' family is expanding once more!
The Bringing Up Bates stars are expecting their fourth child in June, a rep for the couple confirms exclusively to PEOPLE alongside a set of sweet family photos that include their daughters Khloé Eileen, 1, and Kaci Lynn, 4, plus son Bradley Gilvin, 6.
"We are so excited to share the news that we are expecting baby No. 4 in June 2021!" says Whitney, 27. "There's no way to describe the joy in our hearts right now. It feels like all of our free time is spent talking about and planning for this new little blessing that will soon fill our home with smiles and giggles."
"Brad and Kaci are already trying to guess the gender, and we feel like each day is a celebration just anticipating baby No. 4 joining our family!" she adds.
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Whitney tells PEOPLE that her pregnancy so far has not been without its challenges, as husband Zach, 31, was diagnosed with the coronavirus — and ultimately, she got it too.
"Shortly after we found out we were pregnant, Zach unfortunately contracted COVID-19 at his work and I ended up testing positive as well," she says. "It was a rough couple weeks for our family, with a lot of prayers going up for the new baby, but we thankfully have all recovered and feel healthy again."
"Knowing that COVID-19 can cause side effects in pregnancies, even after it has run its course, we are working closely with Dr. Vick to ensure the health and safety of our new little one, and so far everything is looking perfect!" Whitney continues.
She adds, "We greatly appreciate your thoughts and prayers and thank you for all your love and support and excitement for our family through this special time!"
Zach — the oldest of Gil and Kelly Jo Bates' 19 children — and Whitney have been open about the ups and downs along their journey, having experienced a miscarriage weeks after announcing they had a baby on the way at their vow-renewal ceremony in summer 2018.
Their joy at learning they were expecting baby No. 3 — and grief over the miscarriage — was captured on the Christian family's UPtv reality show, which follows Gil and Kelly Jo as they raise 19 children and nine grandchildren … and counting!
Whitney and Zach found comfort in fans who reached out on social media after watching the episodes.
"Our vow renewal and then miscarriage, those were two things that I really struggled with feeling like I wanted to share," Whitney told PEOPLE in February 2019, before announcing another baby (Khloé) was on the way. "But there was such a response of people who had been through the same thing."
Fans can catch up with the Bates family anytime on UP Faith & Family.
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