Archive for August, 2017

Natural Family Planning Awareness Week (Church Bulletin Insert)

Sunday, August 13th, 2017

Natural Family Planning Awareness Week by Father Mark Watkins, pastor, St. Lawrence Church, Cincinnati

The purpose of NFP Awareness Week is to let all Catholics—and non-Catholics too—know that the Church provides very practical help for couples to live out the teaching of Humanae Vitae.  I hope that it also helps couples to believe and follow its tremendously necessary teaching.

On July 25, 1968 Pope Paul VI issued an encyclical that reaffirmed 2,000 years of Catholic teaching about birth control.  It became controversial simply because it reaffirmed what the Catholic Church has been teaching for some 2,000 years.  Why was that controversial?  Pope Pius XI had done the same thing in 1930, and there was no controversy within the Catholic Church.  Why were things so different 49 years ago?

The controversy was stirred up beginning in 1960 with the introduction of the hormonal birth control drugs.  The manner of operation of chemical birth control was different from the contraceptive devices that were common before then.  Some Catholics argued that Catholic teaching could accept this new mode of birth control because it wasn’t so obviously contraceptive.  (It turned out to be much worse because it affects the lining of the uterus to resist implantation of a newly conceived baby in its embryonic stage.  This is what is called the abortifacient potential of the Pill and other hormonal forms of birth control.)

Pope Paul VI reviewed the arguments of those on both sides of the issue.  He clearly saw that the arguments of those who wanted the Church to accept marital contraception could not say a firm NO to any imaginable form of sexual behavior between consenting adults.  Thus he was obliged by his responsibility as the Supreme Pastor of souls to reaffirm that all unnatural forms of birth control are the grave matter of mortal sin.

He also predicted that the widespread acceptance of marital contraception would have far reaching negative consequences.  For that he was also criticized, but the negative effects have been even worse than he foretold.

Still, some may ask, “Why is there all this fuss about Humanae Vitae and birth control?

The answer is very basic:  What is at stake is the divine truth about human love and your salvation!
(Continued and concluded next week)

7. NFP and Ecological Breastfeeding

Monday, August 7th, 2017

Many people are not aware of the natural birth spacing of ecological breastfeeding.  What most people believe is that breastfeeding does not space babies.  These blogs during World Breastfeeding Week were posted to show that breastfeeding does space babiesResearch also supports this fact which is available at the NFP International website.

What exactly is ecological breastfeeding?  It is that form of nursing in which the mother fulfills her baby’s needs for frequent and unrestricted suckling and her full-time presence and in which the child’s frequent and unrestricted suckling postpones the return of the mother’s fertility.  The Seven Standards of ecological breastfeeding are maternal behaviors which are associated with an extended length of amenorrhea or natural infertility.

Those interested in this subject are encouraged to read The Seven Standards of Ecological Breastfeeding: The Frequency Factor. ..available in print or as an e-book.

Sheila Kippley

6. NFP and Ecological Breastfeeding

Sunday, August 6th, 2017

“”My third child had always been a difficult nurser.  I nursed him anytime he wanted.  At 16 months we rid him of his pacifier and nursing became a joy.  From personal experience of nursing both culturally and ecologically, the difference is night and day for both baby and me.  Ecological breastfeeding definitely made me feel closer to my baby.”

“First I want to thank you for the positive effect you’ve had on my mothering skills.  I nursed my first baby for 4 and 1/2 months and then quit because of the inconvenience.  I nursed my second baby for 22 months because it was so convenient.  The only thing that changed was my attitude and finding a supportive group of friends.”

For those mothers wanting support for ecological breastfeeding, visit