Natural Family Planning Ministry
Natural Family Planning (NFP) is an umbrella term for certain methods used to achieve and avoid pregnancies. These methods are based on observation of the naturally occurring signs and symptoms of the fertile and infertile phases of a woman’s menstrual cycle.
NFP is a holistic approach to family planning. Both husband and wife understand their fertility, emotions, and family planning intention (whether to have a baby or not). Its successful use to avoid pregnancy relies upon a couple’s following what they know about the method and one another. Successful use of NFP requires a couple to communicate. In the daily charting of their fertility signs, couples quickly appreciate their shared responsibility for family planning. Husbands are encouraged to “tune into” their wives’ cycles, and both spouses are encouraged to speak openly to each other about their sexual desires and their ideas on family size.
Couples using NFP to avoid pregnancy abstain from intercourse and genital contact when the woman is fertile and can conceive. The total days of abstinence will vary from woman to woman and even from cycle to cycle. Whatever the length of the fertile phase, no barriers or chemicals are used at any time to avoid pregnancy. To achieve pregnancy couples have intercourse during the fertile time of the cycle. NFP is not a contraceptive. It does nothing to suppress or block conception. Instead, couples adjust their behavior according to their family planning intention using the naturally occurring signs and symptoms of a woman’s cycle
NFP promotes God’s plan for sexual love and recognizes the value of children. Sexual relations are understood as love-giving as well as life-giving. It is true family planning. Because NFP respects the two-fold nature of sexual intercourse, it can enrich the bond between husband and wife. Indeed, it can be said that NFP promotes the understanding of “self-donation” between spouses.
Shawn and Nicki from Our Lady of Peace parish share their experience with using Natural Family Planning in their marriage.
What method is Best for You?
Learn what makes each method unique so you can decide which one fits you best.
The following Natural Family Planning methods are available in the Diocese of LaCrosse
SymptoPro is a symptom-thermal method of NFP that instructs couples how to observe and interpret the cervical fluid, the basal body temperature, cervical changes and various other secondary signs. Online self-paced classes, with a personal instructor. Face to Face classes by request, dependent on location. Charting is encouraged.
The Marquette Model is a hormone monitoring method of NFP that teaches couples how to monitor the two female hormones that influence fertility, using the Clearblue Easy fertility monitor. Face to Face and virtual classes are offered by our In-Diocese instructor. Distance Ed classes are available through Whole Mission. Charting is required.
The Creighton Model FertilityCare System is a standardized model of the ovulation method that is typically taught in a medical setting. It provides couples with a defined grading system for cervical fluids. Because of its standardization, charts tracked in this method can be used to detect underlying menstrual cycle irregularities. Face to Face and virtual classes are offered by our in Diocese instructor. Charting is required.
Here from several couples about the life changing benefits from practicing Natural Family Planning in this video created by Couple to Couple League.
NFL quarterback Philip Rivers shares of his own experience practicing NFP and how it has benefited his marriage.
Catholic Life Articles
Here are a few Catholic Life articles. To read the full article, click on the blue colored title.
Office for Marriage and Family Life/NFP
Chris Rogers, Director
Natural Family Planning Coordinator