Dr. Daniel Greene, a local NFP-only physician, to speak Monday during seminar for instructors; couples can learn Creighton Model on Wednesday

DETROIT — Couples striving to be faithful to the Church's teaching regarding God’s plan for marriage and family planning can encounter multiple obstacles to living out the truth. 

Particularly when it comes to questions surrounding contraception, Catholic couples are often surrounded by a world that preaches and practices the opposite of God’s vision for married love. 

To help Catholics understand the beauty and truth of marriage and to educate about the different methods of natural family planning, the Archdiocese of Detroit’s Office of Marriage and Family Ministry will host three events next week, which is designated as Natural Family Planning Awareness Week by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops.

On Monday, July 20, instructors, lay ministers, medical professionals and couples committed to learning and promoting NFP are invited to take part in an online, professional enrichment seminar.

“We’ll be hearing from teachers of different methods to give an overview of what makes each of them attractive to different lifestyles,” said Nicole Joyce, NFP program coordinator for the Archdiocese of Detroit. 

With social distancing an area of concern for teachers and practitioners, an online NFP instructor will give insights into building relationships with students while teaching virtually, Joyce said. 

And Dr. Daniel Greene, an NFP-only physician who operates a private practice locally, will speak about the integration of faith and spirituality within the medical practice of natural family planning.

The seminar will take place from 7-8:30 p.m.

“We’ll wrap up by introducing a new guide to NFP for priests and lay ministers, which is a short, easy-to-use booklet that provides information to help people in ministry talk to individuals and couples about issues surrounding NFP, like contraception, ART, cohabitation, infertility, and miscarriage,” Joyce said.

The guide, which includes an introduction from Fr. David Tomaszycki, the archdiocese’s chaplain for natural family planning, is meant to dispel some of the myths surrounding NFP while offering real-world advice to couples seeking to live the Church’s teaching, Joyce said.

“The goal is to encourage participants to use the guide themselves, and to invite their pastors and lay ministers to read it too, but also to let people who have experienced some of these challenges know that the Church is listening,” Joyce said. “We’re getting the word out to better support them in their struggles, and to help them grow in their faith.”

On Wednesday, July 22, couples will be invited to learn about the Creighton Model of natural family planning, which utilizes “NaPro” — short for “natural procreative” — technology to address and treat underlying medical concerns such as infertility or polycystic ovarian syndrome that can make achieving pregnancy difficult for some couples, Joyce said.

One of the benefits of the Creighton Model is that it utilizes effective natural methods to address such concerns without the use of hormonal contraception or in-vitro fertilization, which many couples think is the only option, Joyce said.

A free online presentation will be available at 7 p.m. 

“We want the intro session to attract anyone who is new to NFP and wants to know more — either as a medical professional or lay minister, or as an individual or a couple,” Joyce said. “It’s a great way to bring NFP to them and introduce them to the science that makes it so appealing.”

Lastly, on Sunday, July 26, families are invited to take part in the annual NFP Family Picnic, co-sponsored by the Detroit chapter of the Couple-to-Couple League, at the Royal Oak VFW Park. The annual tradition — which will take place with social distancing precautions — helps families meet other like-minded families, strengthening bonds and offering peer support. 

The picnic will begin at 2 p.m. Families are invited to bring their own lawn chairs, picnic blankets and snacks.

Natural Family Planning Awareness Week

Natural Family Planning Awareness Week, an educational effort of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, is July 19-25 this year. The Archdiocese of Detroit is offering three events:

Truth and Beauty: Professional Enrichment for NFP Instructors and Supporters

Monday, July 20, 7-8:30 PM (Online Presentation)

This online professional enrichment event invites NFP instructors, lay ministers, and couples committed to promoting NFP to learn about online engagement with couples, promoting awareness in our communities, and new resources available to continue promoting the truth and beauty of God’s plan for marriage. 

Fertility Awareness: Introduction to the Creighton Model FertilityCare System

Wednesday, July 22, 7 PM (Online Presentation)

This FREE online presentation is an opportunity to learn about the science of Natural Family Planning and reproductive health, and the practice of NaProTECHNOLOGY, a revolutionary science that specializes in using fertility awareness as a diagnostic tool to identify and treat reproductive health issues without the use of hormonal contraception or assisted reproductive technologies. The Creighton Model has been widely revered as a faithful solution to common concerns such as infertility, hormone imbalance, PMS, painful periods, and PCOS. This presentation is open anyone interested in learning the facts about NFP and fertility awareness.

NFP Family Picnic

Sunday, July 26, 2020, 2 PM at Royal Oak VFW Park (More info)

Outdoor family fun and food to celebrate the truth and beauty of Natural Family Planning. This long-standing tradition is co-sponsored by the Couple-to-Couple League Detroit Chapter, and invites couples and families to enjoy fellowship and meet new friends. Please feel free to bring your own lawn chairs, picnic blankets and snacks to allow for social distancing as needed.