Want something free, or nearly so, and can guarantee that your chances of staying married are around 95% versus the class average of 50%? Well, take a look at Natural Family Planning.
The Catholic Church teaches that artificial birth control and contraception in any fashion is wrong. And in truth, until August 14, 1930, all contraception was forbidden due to the Comstock Laws. However, on that date, in 1930, the Church of England became the first church to accept marital contraception as morally permissible. And on March 21, 1931, a committee of the Federal Council of Churches also accepted marital contraception.
Personally, I have watched people since the 1960’s view contraception as freedom with sex; however, I knew enough about the birth control pill when I was first married to understand that it was a strong chemical in my body. I observed first hand what it did to my older sister.
Through a Natural Family Planning newsletter put out by the Couple to Couple League, which was introduced to us by our Catholic neighbor in Virginia, I learned, among other things, that the birth control pill and other contraceptive devices cause abortions by making the lining of the uterus hostile to the newly conceived baby.
By embracing Natural Family Planning and Ecological Breastfeeding, Michael and I were able to space out our four biological children and be open to adopting our fifth child. Natural Family Planning and Ecological Breastfeeding also gave us far more than a procreation method. It helped both of us learn how the female’s body completely teaches her and her husband when she is fertile. NFP teaches life—that the marriage act must be open to transmitting life. NFP and ecological breastfeeding gave me, as a woman, a dignity which contraception doesn’t. Contraception makes a wife feel used, whereas NFP calls the couple to abstinence and chastity during the fertile time if, after prayerful consideration, they feel that it isn’t a good time to conceive.
Perhaps, if you are new to the concept of NFP and ecological breastfeeding, you would be interested to know that Natural Family Planning is over 98% effective in postponing pregnancy. Also, couples practicing NFP within the marital embrace have a divorce rate under 5%, while the divorce rate among couples who use contraception is well over 50%. And it is very inexpensive, for all you need is a chart, a thermometer, and training which can be found online from a downloaded manual by John and Sheila Kippley called Natural Family Planning: The Complete Approach found at NFPandmore.org.
Finally, natural Family Planning and Ecological Breastfeeding are not just for Catholics. As stated, my husband and I began practicing it over 30 years ago when in the Protestant Church. It opened our lives and marriage to life, for contraception holds a death mentality. It causes abortions because it gives license to consensual sex whenever one wants. It doesn’t teach abstinence; it doesn’t open one’s eyes to the gift of new life, and it isn’t even good for the environment, for the artificial hormones in the woman’s urine are flushed down the toilet and end up in our water supply where even fish are showing the effect. ** NFP and ecological breastfeeding promote family, abstinence, and waiting until marriage.
Virginity and abstinence before marriage and marital chastity during one’s marriage are what we all need to be endorsing. That is the way our Lord intended it.
**“Contraception: Cracking the Myths” by Prof. Janet E. Smith Lighthouse Catholic Media CD found at LighthouseCatholicMedia.org or JanetESmith.org With a special thanks to John Kippley of NFPandmore.org
Martha Wild King, M. Ed., Author
The Frugal Catholic: Learn to live on less to give and save more.