Abortion, Contraception, Natural Family Planning, Humanae Vitae and Church Teaching

There is a close link between abortion and contraception. Natural Family Planning, furthermore, provides a solution to both. The Encyclical Humanae Vitae has been and will remain a prophetic voice in the Church bearing witness to these truths. Pope John Paul II's Evangelium Vitae likewise explains the connection between abortion and contraception as "fruits of the same tree."

Complete text of Humanae Vitae
Study guide to Humanae Vitae written by the Priests and Pastoral Associates of Priests for Life.
Complete text of Evangelium Vitae

In their 2001 revision of the Pastoral Plan for Pro-Life Activities ("A Campaign in Support of Life"), the United States Catholic Bishops speak of the connection between abortion and contraception in the following paragraphs:

Abortion and Contraception

The Church's teaching and pastoral efforts on responsible parenthood are appropriately treated more fully in other documents. However, we address the issue here, because some promote widespread use of contraception as a means to reduce abortions and even criticize the Church for not accepting this approach.

It is noteworthy that as acceptance and use of contraception have increased in our society, so have acceptance and use of abortion. Couples who unintentionally conceive a child while using contraception are far more likely to resort to abortion than others. Tragically, our society has fallen into a mentality that views children as a burden and invites many to consider abortion as a "backup" to contraceptive failure. This is most obvious in efforts to promote as "emergency contraception" drugs that really act as early abortifacients.

With Pope John Paul II we affirm that contraception and abortion are "specifically different evils," because only "the latter destroys the life of a human being," but that they are also related (The Gospel of Life, no. 13). It is important to remember that means that are referred to as "contraceptive" are, in reality, sometimes also abortifacient. An end to abortion will not come from contraceptive campaigns but from a deeper understanding of our human sexuality, and of human life, as sacred gifts deserving our careful stewardship.

Priests for Life is committed to assisting the clergy to proclaim these realities. We will provide an increasing amount of educational material on this page, as well as links to other web sites.

Married Love and the Gift of Life -- United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, November 2006 [PDF Format]
The Contraception of Grief: The Genesis of Anguish Conceived by Abortifacients and Sterilization
Testimonies about Abortions through Birth Control Pills and Devices

Written articles:

Comments on Humanae Vitae
The Holy Spirit and Humanae Vitae
Why Prolifers Should Oppose Contraception
Reflection for the Thirtieth Anniversary of Humanae Vitae
The Family Planning Dilemma
Teaching NFP Works: A Parish Example
Inside the Vatican interviews Fr. Frank
The Pope Paul VI Institute: Advanced Research in Human Reproduction
"The more children, the more love" -- An interview with a mother of 20
A Doctor Speaks about the Ovulation Method
Letter to a Young Girl - from Dr. Alice von Hildebrand
Audio segments by Fr. Frank: Why Contraception is Wrong
Teaching NFP and Stopping Abortion: [Part 1] and [Part 2

Links to Groups:

Natural Family Planning Outreach
3366 NW Expressway - Bldg. D, Suite 630 - Oklahoma City, OK 73112
Phone: 405.942.4084 - Fax: 405.942.4022
Email: nfpoutreach@nfpoutreach.org
(Invite Fr. Dan McCaffrey to your parish or community to present the Church's teachings on contraception and Natural Family Planning.)

Couple to Couple League
Natural Family Planning

One More Soul Center Dedicated to spreading the truth about the blessings of children and the harmful effects of contraception

Pope Paul VI Institute
Resources in bioethics and reproductive technologies in accordance with the Church's teachings…

GIFT Foundation
A not-for-profit organization dedicated to promoting the virtue of lifelong chastity…

Natural Family Planning International

The Guiding Star Project

Other NFP and related Links

Find an NFP teacher or resources in your area
California Association of Natural Family Planning
WOOMB - World Organisation Ovulation Method Billings ("Billings Method" - ovulation method of NFP)
Billings Ovulation Method of Natural Family Planning
Family of the Americas Foundation (ovulation method of NFP)
Northwest Family Services (Sympto-thermal method of NFP)
SERENA Canada-A Natural Family Planning Service (Sympto-Thermal method of NFP) -
American Academy of FertilityCare Professionals

Priests for Life
PO Box 236695 • Cocoa, FL 32923
Tel. 321-500-1000, Toll Free 888-735-3448 • Email: mail@priestsforlife.org