Natural Family Planning Awareness Week began Sunday, July 24. It’s a national education campaign endorsed by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops and supported by individual dioceses throughout the country.
In the Diocese of Raleigh, Rowena Crist, NFP coordinator, clarified that Natural Family Planning is “not all about sex.”
It is, rather, a gift from God to help couples grow closer to one another, while working together with God. And, she added, it’s about more than how many children a couple should have or how a couple may avoid or achieve pregnancy.
NFP encompasses chastity education. The two main virtues in marriage are charity (the virtue of sacrificing, self-giving love) and chastity (conjugal love shared only between a husband and wife.)
Those with infertility, miscarriage and even adoption may be assisted by NFP.
When couples learn and practice NFP, many different issues are brought to light. As they learn to chart their times of fertility and infertility, the woman’s gynecological health becomes evident through bio-markers.
Couples who have suffered miscarriage may be helped through NFP, both physically and emotionally.
Often, couples come to NFP because of infertility. Success rates for NaPro TECHNOLOGY® in infertility through charting with the Creighton Model FertilityCare™ System is 20 - 40 percent with no medical intervention. Success rates for NaProTECHNOLOGY® in infertility is up to 80 percent with charting and medical or surgical restorative treatment.
We need to acknowledge that NFP is a concrete way which God uses to bring life and love to families. At times, when it is obvious that the couple will not have their own biological child, NFP practitioners may gently lead the couple to the gift of adoption. NFP can provide a place where couples can share intimate and personal thoughts and feelings. At times, their practitioner is the one person who can provide compassion and support in accepting the couples’ infertility so that they may move forward.
Did you know?
The dates of Natural Family Planning Awareness Week highlight the anniversary (July 25) of the papal encyclical Humanae Vitae, which articulates Catholic beliefs about human sexuality, conjugal love and responsible parenthood. According to the USCCB, the dates also mark the feast of Saints Joachim and Anne (July 26), the parents of the Blessed Mother.