• Natural Family Planning

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    What is Natural Family Planning?

  • Natural Family Planning is a scientific method based on the collection and interpretation of natural signs transmitted by the human body to help establish the fertile and infertile phase of a woman’s cycle.

    It is approved and supported by the WHO, with the aim to develop a method that is free from undesired side-effects, and other health hazards. It is a method which would help couples to conceive as well as to avoid pregnancy, and therefore to be in control of their own fertility.

    Natural Family Planning is not a contraceptive method, but rather a means of fertility awareness to help couples to:

    1. Achieve a pregnancy;

    2. Space one pregnancy from another;

    3. Limit the number of children in the couples’ family.

    All this in a responsible way.

    Various indicators and/or combinations of methods, are used to make the methods safe and reliable, mainly the Basal Body Temperature, the Billings Ovulation Method, Cervical Palpation method, and other minor signs. There are no known side-effects on the woman’s health or that of her unborn child.

    It is inexpensive to use.

    Success rate of the method depends on sound knowledge of method and rules, as well as correct use by the couple. A period of abstinence during the fertile phase of the woman’s cycle is required, if pregnancy is to be avoided.

    What does Cana Movement's NFP Course involve?

    Cana Movement organises 5-lecture courses in NFP, which give in-depth information about the male and female physiology and thorough knowledge of the Sympto-Thermal Method, which include the major indicators such as the Basal Body Temperature, the Mucus Method and the Cervical Palpation Method. Minor signs and other information related to the woman/mother’s well being are also covered. This course is spread over a period of ten weeks to make it possible for the couple to obtain confidence in the interpretation of their signs and charts. Individual follow-ups are held with the NFP teacher after the course ends, until the couple is autonomous.

    Couples are encouraged to take up the course around 12 to 18 months before getting married.

    When are Cana Movement's NFP Courses held?

    The NFP courses for engaged couples are held three times a year, namely in January, April and October. They are held at Cana Movement’s premises in Floriana as well as in many parishes around Malta and Gozo. A fee of €30 is charged for the course, which includes an informative booklet, a digital thermometer and record sheets.

    Engaged couples attending the Marriage Preparation Courses are introduced to Natural Family Planning during the talk on Responsible Parenthood.

    How can I apply for Cana Movement's NFP Course?

    Engaged couples attending the Marriage Preparation Course are given an application for the NFP Course. This is also included in the Cana Marriage Preparation Course Booklet for Couples on page 83.

    You may also contact Cana Movement's NFP Unit on Tel: 2223 8000 during office hours or email: sec@canamovement.org.

    Professional Training and Supervision

    Cana Movement currently has a team of 20 NFP educators, 10 NFP speakers (including 5 couples) and 3 tutors. All members of the team offer their services on a voluntary basis. All team members have undergone a training course, and sat for a final exam. It is compulsory for the team members to attend an annual update.

    A training course is held every two years, starting in October and ending in June with continuous supervision as necessary. It is important that applicants for these positions are NFP users themselves, in order to facilitate comprehension of the theoretical and practical aspects of the subject.


    Cana Movement’s NFP team is affiliated with the IEEF/EIFLE (Institut Europeen d’Education Familiale), a European organisation embracing various organisations and institutions who have the welfare of the family at heart and who teach NFP. Local NFP tutors join their European colleagues in scientific conferences held regularly.

    Cana Movement has been teaching Natural Family Planning (NFP) to engaged and married couples since the first years of its foundation in 1956, as it opened its first NFP clinic in 1961. In 1975 it set up the NFP Unit, bringing together a team of trained NFP teachers, with the aim of providing in-service training to its teachers, training new teachers, and teaching NFP methods both in small groups, and on an individual basis.

    Along the years, many volunteers, including doctors, nurses, midwives and NFP teachers, have given their services to thousands of couples wanting to plan their family in a natural way in harmony with the teachings of the Catholic Church. The training of personnel is given great importance in order to ensure that the couples receive the best professional and updated information and support possible.

    Interested in becoming an NFP educator?

    If you are interested in becoming a NFP educator, you may contact Cana Movement's NFP Unit on Tel: 2223 8000 during office hours or email: sec@canamovement.org.


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