Natural Family Planning

Couple to Couple League (CCL) Teaching Natural Family Planning Classes at St. Raymond’s

Who We Are

The Couple to Couple League (CCL) is an international, Catholic, non-profit organization dedicated to promoting and teaching fertility awareness (natural family planning (NFP)) to married and engaged couples. It is essentially a volunteer organization because services are provided by professionally-trained volunteers who are supported by a small staff at the international headquarters in Cincinnati, Ohio. Local Chapters of the organization consist mainly of certified Teaching Couples and Promoters, along with other supportive members.

CCL Today

CCL is the largest NFP provider in the United States, and has a presence in several countries around the world.

CCL @ St. Raymond’s

Bob and Gerri Laird, members of St. Raymond’s Parish, regularly teach the various NFP classes at St. Raymond’s. As a couple, they have been teaching for over 25 years and have taught more than 1100 couples. Gerri is available for NFP consultation at times other than the classes. You can contact the Lairds directly at laird@nfpvirginia.com.

Registering for CCL Classes

Natural Family Planning is part of the marriage preparation program in the Arlington Diocese and at St. Raymond’s Parish. To register for any class in the area, link to http://register.ccli.org. For information regarding classes at St. Raymond’s, contact Bob and Gerri Laird at laird@nfpvirginia.com.

Our Approach

CCL has a three-fold approach to teaching NFP:

  1. The full Sympto-Thermal Method of NFP.
  2. The moral underpinnings for the NFP decision.
  3. The promotion of exclusive and continued breastfeeding and its effect on fertility.

CCL Courses

CCL teaches Natural Family Planning through a series of classes:

  1. The Main NFP Series of three classes – can be taught any time when engaged or married
  2. NFP classes for the Postpartum Couple – best taught for couple prior to delivery of baby or just after delivery
  3. NFP classes for the Premenopause Couple – best taught when couple approaches 40 years of age or older
  4. Upgrade Class – for couples who took the main NFP series prior to January 2008. This class provides a key update.

Main NFP Series

A CCL Main NFP Series consists of three classes spaced about one month apart in which couples learn how to read their signs of fertility and infertility through the Sympto-Thermal Method. In the main NFP Series, you will:

  • Learn how to identify the three common signs of fertility and infertility
  • Understand how to interpret these signs to determine the fertile and infertile times of the female cycle
  • Discover how to apply NFP during special situations, such as stress and coming off hormonal birth control
  • Know how to use NFP to postpone or to help achieve a pregnancy
  • Realize the benefits of breastfeeding, including its effect on fertility
  • Recognize authentic married love and responsible parenthood

Materials and Service Included:

  • Personal chart review and consultations with CCL Teaching Couple
  • Manual: The Art of Natural Family Planning® Student Guide
  • Digital basal thermometer
  • Chart booklet
  • One-year of CCL’s award-winning magazine, Family Foundations
  • Book: Fertility, Cycles & Nutrition by Marilyn M. Shannon
  • CCL Virtual Library — CD of related material (brochures, booklets, one year of Family Foundations, audio talks, links).

Postpartum Class

The Sympto-Thermal Method of NFP is over 99% effective in postponing a pregnancy, and it can also be very helpful when trying to achieve one. Many NFP couples find, however, that the transition time following the birth of a baby presents unique challenges as the woman’s body adjusts hormonally to the birth and her method of baby feeding. When taking CCL’s Postpartum Class, you will:

  • Learn to recognize the hormonal changes in the transition from pregnancy back to normal fertility cycles
  • Realize the benefits of exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months of your baby’s life, and continued breastfeeding thereafter until child-led weaning
  • Know the various types of baby feeding and how each one affects the return of fertility
  • Learn how to apply the rules and guidelines of NFP during the postpartum time, whether breastfeeding or bottle-feeding
  • Make informed decisions regarding responsible parenthood and future pregnancies

Materials and Service Included:

  • Personal chart review & consultation with CCL Teaching Couple
  • Manual: The Art of Natural Family Planning Postpartum Student Guide

Note: If you are not familiar with CCL’s current methodology (released January 1, 2008), it is suggested that you look for an Upgrade Class in your area. You may also opt to purchase The Art of Natural Family Planning Student Guide and Postpartum Student Guide to learn on your own.

Premenopause Class

The Sympto-Thermal Method of NFP is over 99% effective in postponing a pregnancy, and it can also be very helpful when trying to achieve one. Many NFP couples find, however, that the transition time during the years leading up to menopause presents unique challenges as the woman’s body adjusts hormonally to the natural ending of her fertile years. When taking CCL’s Premenopause Class, you
will:

  • Learn to recognize the hormonal changes in the transition from premenopause, through perimenopause, to menopause
  • Know the effects of this transition on fertility
  • Learn how to apply the rules and guidelines of NFP during the perimenopause time
  • Understand how to help maintain good health during this time

Materials and Service Included:

  • Personal chart review and consultations with CCL Teaching Couple
  • Manual: The Art of Natural Family Planning Premenopause Student Guide

Note: If you are not familiar with CCL’s current methodology (released January 1, 2008), it is suggested that you look for an Upgrade Class in your area. You may also opt to purchase The Art of Natural Family Planning Student Guide and Premenopause Guide to learn on your own.

Upgrade Class

The purpose of the Upgrade Class is to teach the new, streamlined CCL method (released January 2008) to couples who are already practicing NFP and learned under CCL’s former method. This class is not intended to teach someone NFP and is not a replacement for the Main NFP Series. The Upgrade Class covers:

  • Review of basic NFP concepts
  • The new CCL chart
  • Measuring signs of fertility
  • Interpreting signs of fertility in both Phase I and Phase III
  • General information on hormonal imbalances

Materials and Service Included:

  • Personal chart review & consultations with CCL Teaching Couple
  • Recommended materials: The Art of Natural Family Planning Student Guide and The Art of Natural Family Planning Chartbook.

Locate and/or register for an Upgrade class.

Note: Prior completion of a CCL class series or the purchase of a Home Study Course is a prerequisite to the Upgrade Class. In addition, a current CCL membership is required.

Membership renewal and/or purchase of materials can be handled during online registration.

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