Why is NFP acceptable?


So, for you, Father, can NFP be used sometimes in a contraceptive behavior?

Why in contraception we unite the will with the act and the means, but with NFP we just analyse the act?


NFP- You don’t do the act during fertile period so as to avoid a creation.
Artificial- Do the act during fertile period also but avoid a creation by some method.
The reason for the objection appears to be not so much for avoiding a creation which in both case happens anyway,but rather for doing the act which don’t result in a creation.Buy then this is exactly what one do during the safe periods even in NFP. So ,avoiding creation- Both cases.
Doing the act without resulting in creation- Both cases. Arguments will go on…


Of course, but NFP (as I am discussing it, as a pseudo contraceptive method) isn’t just scientific information but a technique: You are deliberately avoiding having sexual relations in that period to reduce the chance of conceiving.

I think we won’t agree in this… might as well just close the thread…


When you’re married, you can, by mutual agreement, “avoid having sexual relations” any time you like. There is no requirement that you have to have sex during certain times when you might conceive. For that matter, there is no requirement that you have to have sex at all, as long as you are able to have it and both parties are in agreement not to have it. There are a number of saintly couples who had Josephite marriages. Presumably they too planned not to have children since they weren’t doing anything to cause them to be conceived. Yet they are saints.


But wouldn’t that deny the procreative aspect of marriage? Even the Holy Family agreed to raise Jesus…


Obviously if the couples are saints, it was okay with the Church what they did.


I agree, but why?


The form of an act is important. And following the form is ordered to the way God has created a particular thing.
Before you go any further, you should let this sink in. This is not a statement of expected results, it respects God’s ordered creation, for God’s sake.

NFP appreciates the sex act in an ordered way.
Contra-ception (literally, an act against conception) disrupts the natural order of the act.

It’s like using a hammer to try and drive a drywall screw. Can you do it that way? Sort of…
But neither the hammer or screw are designed to work together that way. And if you use them that way, what you get is disorder, before you even consider the results.
(as Father said, we are not consequentialists)

Could a couple use NFP in ill-will towards life? That would really be a new idea. It’s a lot of work to prevent conception. Why would someone who is ill-disposed to conception use a time intensive method like NFP? NFP is family planning, not family un-planning.
Contraception is minimalist and negative, NFP points to abundance.

That’s one of the blessings of NFP: it brings a couple together in wholesome intimacy to be a family together. It takes intentional work on the part of the couple together, and if nothing else, Christianity is intentional, not accidental.


Once again, if the couple first of all are able to have sex, so it’s a free choice on their part and not brought on by one party’s inability to have it; and they freely choose to marry each other but remain celibate, perhaps because they have both dedicated themselves to God and wish to help each other do that as a married couple, perhaps because there was some other reason for the marriage (for example their parents had arranged the marriage), then where is the problem?

The Church does not compel you to have sex, much less compel you to have sex at a time when you might procreate.


Now I understand better (I think). We shouldn’t use NFP to decrease the chance of conceiving. It’s a little counter-intuitive with its name.

Tis Bearself, thank you for the explanation, I agree with it.


In NFP, if the couple discerns this is not the time to conceive, they do not act.
Contra-ception is an act that is disordered to the way God has created the couple.

Morality evaluates human acts.


Now that you put it that way, it makes sense. I was looking it in the reverse way, the couple was not-acting a (suposedly) dutiful task in marriage.


There are “sins of omission” where you fail to do something that you have a duty to do, as well as “sins of commission” where you do something that is wrong.
The Confiteor mentions sin “in what I have done” (sin of commission) “and in what I have failed to do” (sin of omission).

However, if both spouses are in agreement that they do not wish to have sex at a particular time, then there is no duty to the other spouse (both are in agreement that they don’t wish to have sex) and the Church does not impose on them the duty to have it.


the way I understand it is that it’s not a sin to not have sex, nor is it a sin for a married couple to have sex. So whether or not they are having sex, as long as everyone is respected, there is no sin.

They have to use NFP with the understanding that if any children are conceived, they will be welcomed lovingly as gifts from God. If they are using it with the idea that if it fails they are not welcome to raising the child that is another issue.


Ok, yes this is true, but the context here is abstinence during NFP not a sin of omission.


Do people who are not using NFP think married couples have marital relations every day? There are a lot of reasons to abstain.
NFP means you choose to abstain on fertile days. It is not foolproof and some of my pregnancies were closer together than I chose. I was always open to life and all those babies were welcome with open arms.


Actually, artificial contraception also violates the unitive purpose of sex. It is withholding a part of one from one’s spouse. “I’ll give you all of me, except my fertility”. Not unitive at all. And once you stop being completely self-giving in conjugal relations, you will soon be using it solely for self-pleasure.


In practice, NFP is a difficult method and far from foolproof for most couples. No matter how careful the couple is, conception is nearly always possible. So it is open to new life.


Because God, in his infinite wisdom, designed women to be fertile for only a short time each month. He gave them physical signs when this happens, and gave us minds to interpret these signs.

He also gives us free will to determine if we are in a place to welcome a child at this time, or, if we need to wait.


Actually, artificial has nothing at all to do with it.

Contraception means the act is not ordered toward procreation. Period.

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