Print | Share | Calendar | Diocesan Locator
|   No Spanish version at this time
FOLLOW US  Click to go to Facebook.  Click to go to Twitter.  Click to go to YouTube.   TEXT SIZE Click to make text small. Click for medium-sized text. Click to make text large.  

Natural Family Planning


God designed marriage as an "intimate partnership of life and love" (see Gaudium et spes, no. 48). In God's design, marriage is a unique union of one man with one woman "for the whole of life" (see Canon 1055, The Code of Canon Law). Marriage is oriented to the good of the spouses and to the creation and nurture of new human life (see Gaudium et spes, no. 48). Making decisions therefore, about when and how many children to have in marriage is a sacred responsibility that God has entrusted to husband and wife. This is the foundation of what the Church calls, "Responsible Parenthood"--the call to discern God's will for your marriage while respecting His design for life and love. 

The Catholic Church supports the methods of Natural Family Planning (NFP) because they respect God's design for married love. In fact, NFP represents the only authentic approach to family planning available to husbands and wives because these methods can be used to both attempt or avoid pregnancy. When learning about NFP, it is important to know that: 

Natural Family Planning 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. Couples using NFP to avoid pregnancy abstain from intercourse and genital contact during the fertile phase of the woman's cycle. No drugs, devices, or surgical procedures are used to avoid pregnancy.

NFP reflects the dignity of the human person within the context of marriage and family life, promotes openness to life, and recognizes the value of the child. By respecting the love-giving and life-giving natures of marriage, NFP can enrich the bond between husband and wife.                                          (Standards for Diocesan Natural Family Planning Ministry, p. 23)

This section of the USCCB website provides information and resources that will help you to learn about the methods of Natural Family Planning and Catholic teaching which supports its use in marriage. Many of the resources here are tailored for diocesan NFP coordinators, teachers and educators.

NFP Site Map
This link provides a listing of the content subjects provided in this section.

Young family in the yard.Announcements

  • The World Meeting on the Family is fast approaching (Sept. 22-27, 2015). We hope to see you in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia for this important gathering of Catholic marriage ministers ( Many of the national NFP leaders are hosting exhibit booths during the theological congress at the Convention Center. We too will have  USCCB/marriage ministry exhibit tables. Hope to see you there!
  • National NFP Awareness Week 2015 July 19-25. Thank you to all the NFP educators who worked so hard to make the 2015 NFP Week a success! Remember, you can continue to use the 2015 poster in your ongoing educational efforts. See the 2015 poster here. To order the poster call toll-free: 1-866-582-0943 or write

  • Please visit our education page for healthcare professionals!
    See: NFP Education for Healthcare Professionals

  • More...


  • 2016 June 3 and 4; Save these dates for the Billings Ovulation Method Association's conference in Tampa, Florida. Contact

  • 2015 October 23-25; Billings Ovulation Method Association offers an "Extension Course" at the American Airlines Training and Conference Center in Fort Worth, TX. This course is designed as a prerequisite for teachers who wish to become supervisors and /or trainers of Billings teachers. Contact:

  • 2015, September 22-27; World Meeting on the Family, Philadelphia, PA, "Love is our Mission, The Family Fully Alive." This important celebration of marriage and family is co-sponsored by the Pontifical Council on the Family and the Archdiocese of Philadelphia. See:

  • 2015, August 8; Contraceptive Conundrum: Effects and Side Effects, Georgetown University, Washington, DC. Vicki Thorn (one of the founders of Project Rachel), in collaboration with the Edmund D. Pellegrino Center for Clinical Bioethics of Georgetown University's School of Medicine, is offering this one-day symposium. The conference is focused on the facts about contraception from a research-based point of view. It will explore the many negative side-effects and social outcomes. The symposium is open to the public. To view the agenda and register, see:

  • 2015, July 19-25; National NFP Awareness Week. Visit the web page to see poster and find resources.

  • 2015, July 15-18; Annual Meeting of the American Academy of FertilityCare Professionals in St. Petersburg, Florida. See more information at:

  • 2015, July 14; Pre-Conference, A. A. FertilityCare Professionals: "The Story of the Creighton Model FertilityCare System and NaProTechnology." See flyer.

  • 2015, June 12-14; NFP World Congress, Milan, Italy. This meeting is for NFP leaders, scientists, educators and certified teachers of all methods. See:

  • 2015, 22-24; BOMA-USA, Teacher Training (Yorba Linda, CA). Contact: Louise Allard: 949-916-4138 or More...



  • One More Soul: Can't find the right NFP brochure that you would like to use for a marriage preparation class? Remember that One More Soul (OMS) carries NFP and marriage ministry resources that are published not only by OMS but also by a variety of Catholic leaders and organizations . Please visit their website to view the resources,
  • Contraception: The Real Story is a new resource from the St. Augustine Foundation to help you with your educational efforts in defense of God's vision of human sexuality, marriage, conjugal love and responsible parenthood and the virtue of chastity. View at: This sixteen-part video educational resource is helpful for parents, diocesan staff (e.g., Marriage and Family Life, NFP, Pro-Life Activities, and Youth Ministry), teachers, Catholic physicians, and parents. Developed by the staff of the St. Augustine Foundation (SAF), the text was written in consultation with a variety of national NFP educators and physicians. The SAF series provides: a summary of key Catholic teaching on marriage, conjugal love and responsible parenthood; an overview of human reproduction; a summary of the facts about various artificial contraceptives and their many negative side effects; and a discussion on the virtue of chastity. The resource is also available in a PowerPoint presentation. Video, script, and graphics are available free of charge to diocesan staff. For more information, contact: John E. Fitzgerald, Director, The St. Augustine Foundation; 914-613-5510;

  • FACTS launches Fertility Appreciation Collaborative to Teach the Systems (FACTS), is comprised of NFP physicians, leaders and educators. Their mission is to educate healthcare professionals, especially physicians, on the science and methods of NFP.

  • New "Theology of the Body" Video Series available from David Hajduk, a theologian, husband and father with over twenty years of experience in religious education, youth, family life, and Pro-Life ministries. The first video (The Beginning) is now posted on Hajduk's website. Additional videos are forthcoming.  For more information, visit the website of David Hajduk.

  • Billings Charting App available from Lawson Culver, the talent behind has now launched an android app for Billings users to chart their fertility cycles from the ease of their smart phones. For more information visit:

  • The St. Augustine Foundation has developed a new website to help you educate on NFP and Catholic teaching on human sexuality, the virtue of chastity, marriage, conjugal love and responsible parenthood. A special feature are brief courses tailored to young adults. Also included is a video of interviews with Catholic physicians. See

  • BOMA-USA Billings Ovulation Method Association has available the second edition of the book, A Preachable Message. For couples who would like to learn the Billings Method online, WOOMB offers distance education. Contact: Sue Ek at
  • Women, Sex, and the Church; A Case for Catholic Teaching, (Erika Bachiochi, ed.), is  written by women who challenge "the common misconceptions that the Catholic Church's teachings are anti-women and anti-sex." This book offers a variety of faithful Catholic women writing on such issues as: love, sex, reproduction, women in the home, and women in the world. A teaching guide designed especially for students of law, feminist theory, and sexual and social ethics is also available. See: Women, Sex and the Church.

  • Now available, the video, "Saying I Do:  What Happens at a Catholic Wedding," introduces viewers to the Roman Catholic Rite of Marriage and answers frequently asked questions about Catholic marriage. This 22-minute video is available for free on the homepage of the For Your Marriage Website.
  • On-line Introduction to the Billings Method  Sponsored by the Archdiocese of Chicago this on-line course provides an introduction to the science of NFP and the Billings Method in particular. A special feature is a video of the NFP couple who teach and witness to living the NFP lifestyle. Supplemental materials such as PDF documents for further reading are also included. Register online. For more information contact: Maria Garcia, NFP Coordinator, Archdiocese of Chicago, (312) 534-8273; e-mail:
  • On-Line Marriage Preparation  Developed by the Archdiocese of Chicago, this program allows engaged couples to experience a qualified Catholic Pre-Cana program completely at their convenience through the Internet. Interested? See: Online Marriage Prep.

  • Catholic Marriage Prep is an on-line resource and part of Agape Catholic Ministries in the Diocese of Colorado Springs.. It allows for both marriage prep and NFP classes in person or on the web. To find out more visit  their website
  • Need NFP resources to give to your parish priest? See the "Clergy Packet" published by the Couple to Couple League.
  • Daughters Forever, Sons Forever: Helping Parents Connect with Teens on Important Issues by Linda Kracht, is a resource for Catholic parents who wish to counter negative cultural messages and raise faithful teens. The book tackles such topics as gender, vocations, and fertility. The book and study guides can be purchased by visiting Fortifying Families of Faith.



Mission of the USCCB Natural Family Planning Program

Helping couples to deepen conjugal love and achieve responsible parenthood is part of the Church's total pastoral ministry to Catholic spouses. Fulfillment of this ministry includes both education and pastoral care. This means "instilling conviction and offering practical help to those who wish to live out their parenthood in a truly responsible way" (Familiaris consortio, #35).

Permission is granted for copying and reprinting the NFP information on this website. Please cite the source of the information and unless otherwise noted, please include the following text: "Used with permission from the NFP Program, United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. All rights reserved."

Contact Information:

Natural Family Planning Program
Secretariat for Laity, Marriage, Family Life & Youth
3211 4th Street NE
Washington, DC 20017

Telephone: (202) 541-3240

By accepting this message, you will be leaving the website of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. This link is provided solely for the user's convenience. By providing this link, the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops assumes no responsibility for, nor does it necessarily endorse, the website, its content, or sponsoring organizations.

cancel  continue