Who is Fr. Marc Calegari, SJ?
The California Association of Natural Family Planning honors Fr. Marc Calegari, SJ, for his loyalty to Church teaching and continuous promotion of natural family planning nationally and internationally by naming their award after him.
Fr. Calegari was born in San Francisco in 1930, and grew up on the Peninsula. Upon graduating from Serra High School, he entered the Society of Jesus and was ordained in 1961. A distinguished simultaneous translator, he served in that capacity at the Second Vatican Council, and the 32nd and 33rd General Congregations of the Society of Jesus with French as his second language and Italian as his third. After five years service in Rome, and a brief assignment at America magazine in New York, he joined the faculty of Brophy College Prep in Phoenix, where he remained for 24 years. Fr. Calegari died in Phoenix, Arizona in 1992, the same year CANFP was organized.
Even as a seminarian he foresaw the need for natural family planning centers, studied European examples of them, and amassed a vast collection of articles, tapes, and books in the field. He was in demand throughout the nation for institutes, speeches, leadership formation, and a fabled degree of personal counseling. He knew immediately that the introduction of the birth control pill in the early 60’s would be physically and morally disastrous for marriages in general and particularly devastating to women. He initiated a prophetic role of NFP proselytizing, undergirding his arguments with both the theological and the biological facts. He was a tremendous influence on many in the California NFP movement, including CANFP’s foundress, Terry Maes. Hence, for his early, necessary, vital, prophetic role in the development of NFP teaching in the United States we have named the CANFP Award after Father Marc Calegari.