35 people—both married couples and singles—from across the Diocese of Allentown gathered at Black Rock Brewing Company in Pottsville to learn about Fertility Awareness and God’s design for married love.
Designed With Purpose: A Fertility Awareness and NFP Primer, was the first public event held by the diocesan Fertility Awareness and Natural Family Planning (NFP) Task Force.
The Task Force is focused on spreading fertility and Natural Family Planning awareness and developing local communities of support so that individuals and families can understand and live out the beauty and truth of the Church’s teachings on human sexuality.
According to Task Force member and Director of Evangelization and Formation Kristin Osenbach, “Pope Francis’ recent praise of NFP as ‘a valuable tool’ for married couples provided an extra boost of encouragement” to the ministry’s leaders.
The evening included a series of short presentations designed to convey the basics of NFP and Fertility Awareness. Task Force members spoke about the science supporting the various methods of Fertility Awareness and NFP, and their benefit to women’s overall health and well-being. They discussed how NFP is a gift that allows couples to cooperate with God’s design for married love. They also shared their personal stories, both the blessings and struggles. The evening concluded with resources to help women and couples take the next step in learning more.
“I wish everyone knew more about this from a young age – men and women!” said one attendee of the April 30 event.
According to Task Force chair Kathleen Chovanes, the event was only the beginning for the young diocesan ministry.
“We wanted to start with a general information event that could reach everyone in the community, Catholics and non-Catholics alike. Moving forward, we hope to plan more events for specific groups including married couples who already practice NFP, single women wanting to chart for their health, and even teens and their parents. Providing resources and having these conversations is really important, Chovanes said, adding, “We are beyond grateful to Bishop Schlert for his support.”
The ministry, launched in 2021, requests that interested parties check the AD Times, AD Today, and diocesan social media for announcements about upcoming events. Questions can be directed to Kristin Osenbach at email@example.com or Kathleen Chovanes at firstname.lastname@example.org.