CCL Main NFP Series Thu 4/12/18 6:00PM
Thu 5/10/18 6:00PM
Thu 6/14/18 6:00PM
St. Stephen's
Caseyville, IL
CCL Main NFP Series Mon 5/7/18 6:30PM
Mon 6/4/18 6:30PM
Mon 7/9/18 6:30PM
Fairview Heights, IL Register
CCL Main NFP Series Thu 7/15/18 6:00 PM
Thu 8/16/18 6:00 PM
Thu 9/13/18 6:00 PM
St. Stephen's
Caseyville, IL
CCL Main NFP Series Thu 11/15/18 6:00 PM
Thu 12/13/18 6:00 PM
Thu 1/10/19 6:00 PM
St. Stephen's
Caseyville, IL
Creighton Intro Sessions By Appointment
Call to Schedule
Fairview Heights, IL (618) 979-8902
CCL Upgrade, Postpartum or Premenopause Classes Available upon Request Fairview Heights, IL This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
CCL Virtual Classes Listed on CCL Website Online

National NFP Awareness Week

 Natural Family Planning Awareness Week is a national educational campaign. The Natural Family Planning Program of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops develops a poster each year with basic supportive materials. It is the individual dioceses however, that offer a variety of educational formats in the local church to focus attention on Natural Family Planning methods and Church teachings which support their use in marriage.

The dates of Natural Family Planning Awareness Week highlight the anniversary of the papal encyclical Humanae Vitae (July 25) which articulates Catholic beliefs about human sexuality, conjugal love and responsible parenthood. The dates also mark the feast of Saints Joachim and Anne (July 26), the parents of the Blessed Mother. For further information, visit the USCCB NFP Week webpage.

Natural Family Planning Ministry

Natural family planning (NFP) is a general name for the methods of family planning that are based on a woman’s menstrual cycle. A man is fertile throughout his life, while a woman is fertile for only a few days each cycle during child-bearing years. Modern methods of NFP are based on extensive medical research and are able to account for variable length cycles. A woman experiences clear, observable signs indicating when she is fertile and when she is infertile. Learning to observe and understand these signs is at the heart of education in natural family planning.

When a couple decides to postpone pregnancy, NFP can be very effective. NFP can also be very helpful for couples who desire to have a child because it identifies the time of ovulation. It is used by many fertility specialists for this purpose. Thus a couple can have marital relations at a time when they know that conception is most likely to occur.

The Belleville Diocese does not require engaged couples to attend a course in Natural Family Planning, but some parishes do require couples to attend an introductory class or full class series. We strongly encourage engaged couples to learn about NFP as part of their marriage preparation even if it is not required as part of their marriage preparation. Couples who practice NFP typically experience increased communication, a deeper respect for one another and a lower divorce rate compared to couples who don't practice NFP. The Diocesan Office of Worship publishes a schedule of Pre-Cana and Engaged Encounter weekends. Some Pre-Cana and Engaged Encounters in the diocese include a talk on NFP. If you are attending one of these and are interested in learning about NFP, please contact us and we can let you know if NFP will be discussed. Alternatively, FertilityCare Services of Belleville offers 1-hour long introductory sessions that provide a brief overview of one method of NFP and it's medical basis.


    • "It's reassuring that NFP is what God wants us to do in our marriage. We feel blessed to have this knowledge of our bodies that generations in the past did not have. It's helped us appreciate each other's bodies as a beautiful gift from God, rather than as an object to be used for our own gratification. Because of NFP, we have grown closer physically, emotionally, and spiritually." ~Trent & Ashley

    • "The couples I know who practice NFP tell me how much it helps their marriage since it requires ongoing conversation about the most intimate part of their relationship." ~Fr. Jim Deiters, St. Clare Parish in O'Fallon

    • "If you open up your mind and heart to the teaching of the Church on contraception, through the intercession of Our Blessed Mother, conversion to Christ is possible. Natural Family Planning frees the heart to live as God intended all along." ~Dr. Rick Brennan, MD

    • "My husband and I had used contraception on and off for the first 13 years of our marriage, but when we discovered The Theology of the Body in 2002, it changed our lives forever. We learned for the first time what real love is, how it is communicated, and how to live it within marriage. The truth of “free, faithful, total and fruitful love” pierced our hearts. We wanted the real thing—and no longer desired the counterfeit of contraception. We threw out the contraception, received the Sacrament of Reconciliation, and we have never looked back. It was the best decision we ever made for our marriage, for our family life, and for our faith life!" ~Patty Schneier

NFP Belleville Launches a Facebook Page

See our NFP Belleville page on Facebook for more dynamic content, additional articles and events.

NFP Coordinators

Matt and Emily Joost
Parish: St. Mary's in Belleville
E-Mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Matt and Emily Joost are the NFP Coordinators for the Diocese of Belleville, volunteering through the Respect Life Ministry. They are certified as a Couple to Couple League (CCL) Teaching Couple. Emily is a certified Creighton Model FertilityCare™ Practitioner. She runs the FertilityCare™ Services of Belleville and also works at St. Mary's SSM Hospital in Richmond Heights, MO. Matt and Emily speak about NFP at Pre-Cana weekends in the diocese. Matt and Emily have been married since November 2007.

NFP Doctors

These doctors practice in the St. Louis area. All of them have been trained in at least one method of NFP. They have also chosen not to prescribe birth control. maintains a nationwide list of NFP-Only Doctors if you are trying to locate doctors in other areas.

Michael Dixon MD and Brian S Gosser MD

Specialty: OB/GYN
Phone: (314) 842-7910
Office: St. Gerard Obstetrics and Gynecology at St. Anthony’s Medical Center in St. Louis
E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Richard Brennan MD

Specialty: OB/GYN
Phone: (314) 849-3711
Office: St. Anthony’s Plaza OB/GYN Specialists

Patrick Yeung, Jr. MD

Specialty: GYN
Phone: (314) 977-7455
Office: St. Mary’s Hospital in Richmond Heights, MO
*Specializes in Endometriosis

Gavin Puthoff, MD

Specialty: OB/GYN
Phone: (314) 251-8965
Office: Mercy Clinic Fertility Services - Medical Tower B

Peter Danis MD

Specialty: Family Practice
Phone: (314) 251-8939
Office: Mercy Medical Center in St. Louis
E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


NFP Instructors

Andy and Anndrea Martignoni
Parish: St. Stephen's in Caseyville

Andy and Anndrea are a certified CCL Teaching Couple. Andy and Anndrea have been married since November 2007.


Shawn and Emma Tuthill
Parish: St. Joseph's in Marion

Shawn and Emma were married in October 2006. They are a certified CCL Teaching Couple. They speak spoken about NFP at Pre-Cana in the southern part of the diocese.


Megan Sustar
Parish: Blessed Sacrament in Belleville

Megan was trained and certified as a FertilityCare Practitioner in 2013 in St. Louis, MO through the Pope Paul VI Institute. She has worked as a practitioner at FertilityCare Services of Belleville since 2014. She has a Bachelor of Science in Biology from Duke and a Master of Science in Education from Columbia. She went on to receive her BSN, RN degree from Saint Louis University.


Melissa Coello
Parish: Our Lady of Mt. Carmel in Herrin

Melissa was trained and certified as a FertilityCare Practitioner in 2017. She has an MSN from Case Western Reserve University and certification as a nurse-midwife – CNM. She is residing in southern Illinois near Carbondale

NFP Methods offered in the Belleville Diocese

There are many modern methods of NFP for couples to choose from. Currently there are 2 methods available in the Belleville Diocese. Both are recognized by the USCCB and the instructors have been trained and certified by national training programs.

A brief description of the Couple to Couple League's Sympto-Thermal Method and the Creighton Model FertilityCare™ System are shown below. Choosing a method may seem difficult for a couple who is new to NFP. We are available to answer any questions about the NFP methods. Contact us by email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


Creighton Model FertilityCare™ System

Couples who use this method observe cervical mucus to determine times of fertility and infertility.

Couples attend an Introductory Session in a group or private meeting. This 1-hour session provides the information the couple needs to know to begin charting. After two weeks of charting the couple then starts attending private follow up meetings with a FertilityCare™ Practitioner. The full instruction consists of eight 1-hour follow ups and costs $250 total or you can choose the number of desired follow ups at $30 per follow up. For marriage preparation, the Introductory Session and four follow ups are recommended.  Contact FertilityCare™ Services of Belleville at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

In addition, the Creighton Model offers NaProTECHNOLOGY (Natural Procreative Technology) which monitors and maintains a woman's natural cycle. This medical approach includes surgical and medical treatments that work in cooperation with a woman's reproductive system. It helps with PMS, infertility, PCOD, and many other abnormalities. To learn more about this approach, visit


CCL Sympto-Thermal Method

Couples who use this method observe temperatures, cervical mucus and changes in the woman's cervix to determine times of fertility and infertility.

The main class series covers all of the information a couple needs to learn this method in three classes spaced about one month apart. A certified Teaching Couple teaches three different ways: live onsite, live online, or self-paced online.  Each costs $135 total. Couples can register online at

CCL also offers supplemental classes for postpartum and premenopausal couples in order to provide additional guidance for using NFP during these unique times. CCL offers upgrade classes for couples who learned the method in the past and would like a refresher. Couples can register for these classes online at

NFP Side Info Article

Diocesan Pastoral Center
2620 Lebanon Avenue, Building #2
Belleville, IL 62221
FAX:  618-257-2969


Matthew and Emily Joost
618-277-8181 ext. 1112
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

NFP Speakers

Kevin and Laura McNicholas
Parish: Holy Ghost in Jerseyville, IL

Kevin and Laura were married in May 2006. They have been NFP promoters for several years and they speak about NFP at Engaged Encounter weekends.

Our Mission

Our mission is to transform marriages through the Catholic Church's teaching on human sexuality by promoting Natural Family Planning to Catholics and others in the Diocese of Belleville and by supporting those who use Natural Family Planning through education, community and prayer.