Amid a battle with President Obama over a new contraception mandate, the nation's Roman Catholic bishops are promoting natural family planning -- but will their flock take heed?
When the Obama administration in January announced that employers will have to provide contraception coverage to their employees, U.S. Catholic bishops took the lead in fighting the mandate.
Allied with other denominations, the Catholic hierarchy has organized an energetic, nationwide effort to overturn this new federal rule. The Catholic Church calls birth control a sin, even as many Catholics practice it.
The bishops are hoping to change that with their Natural Family Planning Awareness Week, an annual campaign that begins this Sunday (July 22). It’s the church’s only acceptable form of birth control, even as many sexuality educators consider it relatively unreliable.
Natural Family Planning Awareness Week, then, may provide a window into a church teaching that is helping to drive the most serious standoff between the church and the federal government in decades.