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Fertility Care Family Centre.

St. Marguerite Bourgeoys (1620-1700) was the foundress in Montreal of the School Sisters of Notre Dame. She was chosen as the patron of the first Fertility Care Programme in Canada, which began in Toronto in 1981. There are now three Fertility Care Programmes in British Columbia (in Cranbrook, Quesnel, and Kelowna) and five in Ontario (in Toronto, Peterborough, Brockville, Stratford, and London) in addition to the hundreds of them in the United States. This program educates women and couples in proper appreciation of sexuality, fertility, health car , family relations, and family spirituality. Service is given by gynecologists, pharmacists, other health professionals, and clergy. And youths are informed about these matters and enabled to withstand peer pressure.

The Toronto Centre uses the Creighton Model of Natural Procreative (NaPro) Technology, which uses the most up-to-date gynecological science to build or restore healthy families in which the spouses have a mutual understanding of sexuality and fertility and a shared spirituality. The new science is able to transform lives.

Couples are educated about their potential for regulating family size. The choices are based on sound knowledge of their fertility, and with knowledge comes the freedom to make wise choices. NaPro involves the systematic evaluation of events occurring throughout a woman's procreative cycle. It also identifies and treats any gynecological abnormalities. The effectiveness of the Creighton Method of achieving pregnancy is high, and its effectiveness in avoiding regnancy is as good as that of oral contraceptives and better than any other drug or device on the market.

This program has a Christ-centered approach based on Catholic teaching in Pope Paul VI's encyclical Humanae vitae. It accepts fertility as a normal, healthy, life-giving process and as a precious gift from God. It respects the God-given integrity of marriage and the value of human life from conception to natural death. It does not prescribe or refer for contraceptive agents, sterilizations, abortions, or artificial reproductive technologies. It also believes that it is the right of married couples to determine for themselves the number of children they wish to have in consultation with each other, in generosity and prayer.

Women benefit through growth in self-respect, an appreciation of womanhood, a better understanding of their body, an ongoing monitoring, gynecological health, and participation in their own evaluation and treatment. Couples benefit through mutual participation in their decision making, appreciation of the dignity of marriage, and strengthening of the marital relationship. Children benefit also through less likelihood of divorce, a stable home environment, improved self-worth, decreased substance abuse, and less physical or sexual child abuse.

Volunteers assist the work of the program by doing office work and by raising funds. Former clients also share their stories with other couples. The fee charged is a modest one.
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Author:Kennedy, Fr. Leonard
Publication:Catholic Insight
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:1CANA
Date:Nov 1, 2001
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