Natural regulation of fertility


I. Sexuality: a question of the view of man

Christians believe that human sexuality is a gift of the creator. So the Church teaches: "Everyone, man and woman, should acknowledge and accept his sexual identity." (Catechism of the Catholic Church 2333). „ Sexuality is ordered to the conjugal love of man and woman." (KKK 2360). In contrast for example to the Manichaeism, to some trends of the Gnosis or of the Buddhism, Christianity does not teach to overcome the physicality but to accept it and to use it in a correct, humane and reasonable manner.

"It is an illusion to think that we can build a true culture of human life if we do not help the young to accept and experience sexuality and love and the whole of life according to their true meaning and in their close interconnection. Sexuality which enriches the whole person, "manifests its inmost meaning in leading the person to the gift of self in love."
(Encyclical „Evangelium vitae“ No. 97)

II. NER is more than a method: it is a form of life

The physician Prof. Dr. Josef Rötzer developed the "Natürliche Empfängnisregelung" (NER; Natural regulation of conception) as a method of the regulation of conception respectively of family planning which takes into consideration the natural menstrual cycle of the woman. But NER does not only want to be a method but lead to a form of life that is based on a partnership. 

In contrast to the contraceptions this attitude of life assumes a persistent partnership and a mutual consideration. So, the comprehension of the husband for the wife is growing but also the comprehension of both to be responsible parents, because the wife and the husband take a common responsibility. NER is basing on the willingness of periodic abstinence and by this on a picture of the person which supposes the domination of the sexual drive to be possible and humane. Reversely, NER also gives the possibility to find the optimal moment of a conception. NER is avoiding any manipulation of the female organism that is detrimental to health.

II. How NER is functioning

NER is based on the scientific fact that most of the days within the biological cycle a woman is infertile (sympto-thermal method). The facts taken into consideration are the measurement of the temperature at the moment of waking up, where the woman takes the rectal or vaginal body temperature immediately after waking up with a conventional thermometer and the cervix mucus during the fertile days in the cervical channel perceived in the area of the vagina entrance. According to certain rules, the temperature and the observation of the mucus are analysed and registrated in tables developed for that purpose.

These tables and all necessary information for a precise use and analysis are in the standard literature of Prof. Dr. Josef Rötzer "Natürliche Empfängnisregelung" (Natural regulation of conception). In case of correct use, this method is safe. Also women with irregular biological cycles, during the breastfeed period and the menopause may use it.

On the homepage you find many advice centres in Germany, Austria and Switzerland.

IV. Literatur (in excerpts):

  • Papst Paul VI., Enzyklika "Humanae vitae" über die rechte Ordnung der Weitergabe menschlichen Lebens, 1968.
  • Papst Johannes Paul II., Enzyklika "Evangelium vitae" über den Wert und die Unantastbarkeit des menschlichen Lebens, 1995.
  • Josef Rötzer, "Natürliche Empfängnisregelung", Herder Verlag, Freiburg 2005 (29., neu bearbeitete Auflage). (Natural regulation of fertility)
  • Andreas Laun, "Liebe und Partnerschaft", Franz-Sales-Verlag, Eichstätt 2000 (6., neu bearbeitete und erweiterte Auflage). (Love and partnership)
  • Karol Wojtyla (Johannes Paul II.), "Liebe und Verantwortung", Kösel Verlag, München 1979. (Love and responsibility)
  • Christopher West, "Theologie des Leibes für Anfänger. Einführung in die sexuelle Revolution nach Papst Johannes Paul II.", Kisslegg 2006 (2.Auflage). (Theology of the body for beginners. Introduction in the sexual revolution according to Pope John Paul II.)