First, we teach Ecological Breastfeeding because it spaces babies as well as maximizing all the many health benefits of breastfeeding-in-general.
Second, we teach a form of fertility awareness that can be used at the 99% level of effectiveness. Specifically, we teach how to use the two basic signs of fertility in a crosschecking way for highest confidence and effectiveness. Unfortunately, most diocesan programs promote the less effective mucus-only systems. The women who typically run the diocesan NFP effort are frequently mucus-only enthusiasts. Interestingly, back in the mid-70s, the US Bishops got the NIH to conduct an independent study at a Jewish hospital in Los Angeles. The results were published in 1981, showing that there were about twice as many unplanned pregnancies in the mucus-only group as in the crosschecking group. You can find these things at our website. You think you are frustrated at our bishops? Think of my frustration when the results of the study they sponsored are ignored in their own diocesan administrations. By the way, a very recent study confirmed that the mucus sign can be used more effectively when crosschecked by a urine-testing monitor. It’s a lot simpler to take a morning temperature.
Third, we teach not just fertility awareness but also “meaning awareness.” By that I mean we teach a very simple theology that can be stated in 17 words. “Sexual intercourse is intended by God to be, at least implicitly, a renewal of the marriage covenant.” That is, each marriage act ought to be an expression of their wedding pledges of love and faith and commitment, for better and for worse. “I take you now once again in love and for better and for worse.”
If you believe that, then it is easy to see that when a couple engage in an act of contraceptive intercourse, their body language is saying, “I take you for better but definitely and positively NOT for the imagined worse of possible pregnancy” So the act is not a renewal of the marriage covenant; it is essentially dishonest.
This concept also helps to explain why the same physical act of coitus is immoral outside of marriage but can be a great good within marriage according to God’s plan.
If we had our way, every young man and woman in the world would recognize the great benefits of breastfeeding-in-general and especially of Ecological Breastfeeding and would act accordingly when they married. Incidentally, every year new benefits of breastfeeding are published, and my wife reviews them as blogs yearly at our website. (The next 6 blogs cover the breastfeeding research for last year, 2016.)
If we had our way, young and old alike would believe that sexual intercourse has a God-given meaning, and the vast, vast majority of them would refrain from the dishonesty of sex outside of marriage. What if that was the belief and practice here in the States? What would be the economic effect if out-of-wedlock birth rates plummeted from 70% for some groups and 40% for others down to 5% or so? Local and federal taxpayer support for the children in fatherless homes would plummet accordingly, and so would prison populations as almost every child was brought up in a two-parent family.
In his Farewell Address, George Washington notes that religion and morality are indispensable supports for a prosperous democracy. Oh how true!
I suggest that you might find our website of interest. I invite you to return to the full practice of the Faith.
Natural Family Planning International