Georgia Bulletin

The Newspaper of the Catholic Archdiocese of Atlanta


Couples Speak To Couples In NFP Classes

By LYNN CRUTCHFIELD, Special Contributor | Published July 15, 2004

Natural Family Planning has been referred to as “the church’s best kept secret,” but in the Archdiocese of Atlanta the secret is out and couples are signing up for classes in record numbers.

I believe the reason for the increase can be summed up in the support of Archbishop John F. Donoghue and the amazing dedication of our NFP teachers and the medical community.

When I first began coordinating NFP in the archdiocese 15 years ago, there were four teaching couples. Today we have approximately 25 certified teaching couples and more in the process of certification.

NFP is a ministry in our church. Like other ministries in the church, people tend to minister in the place that the Lord has moved their heart. The sincere way these couples share their journey of love, life and sexuality with our engaged couples works.

Our message reaches hundreds of couples who attend various forms of marriage preparation in the archdiocese. It is wonderful to have an opportunity to educate and dispel many of the myths.

NFP classes are offered in English and Spanish at many of the parishes in the archdiocese. The locations are publicized through parish bulletins and The Georgia Bulletin. Individual instruction is also available.

A course of NFP usually consists of four classes, spaced over a four-month time frame. Each class is two hours in length and the instructor is available to each student for supervision while they learn the method.

There are three methods of NFP taught in the Archdiocese of Atlanta.

The Sympto-Thermal Method focuses on three major signs of fertility: the waking or basal body temperature; the position of the cervix; and the mucus discharge. Couples are taught to accurately read the coinciding of these three signs.

Classes in English are available through a variety of teaching instructors who are listed as classes are announced. Classes are available in Spanish by Alex and Maria Munoz, who may be reached at (770) 205-4480 and Daniel and Aline Sanchez, who may be reached at (770) 352-0488.

The Ovulation Method is based on external mucus observations. The method can be used in regular or irregular cycles, in breast-feeding, in pre-menopause or after discontinuing contraceptive medications.

The Ovulation Method is taught in individual sessions by: Mary Owens, Cumming, who may be reached at (770) 886-4481; Christina Cryan, Lilburn, who may be reached at (770) 381-7644; Ann Labar, PA, Northlake, who may be reached at (770) 939-5102; Gemini Alexander, LaGrange, who may be reached at (770) 884-4224; and Vicki Tuck, Marietta, who may be reached at (770) 514-9007.

The Ovulation Method is taught in Spanish by: Rosie Garcia-Carreras, Stone Mountain, who may be reached at (770) 925-8206; Ana Milena Serna, Norcross, who may be reached at (770) 279-2255; and Valentina Alejos, Canton, who may be reached at (770)720-7664.

A Multi-Indexed Method is based on mucus, temperature and a fertility monitor. This method is taught by Kathleen Raviele, M.D., FACOG, Northlake, who may be reached at (770) 491-0255 and by Sara San Fratello, R.N., who may be reached at (770) 270-9859.


For additional information, please contact Lynn Crutchfield at the Family Life Office at (404) 885-7450.