Catechism of the Catholic Church

The Profession of Faith 95 372 Man andwomanweremade “for each other”—not that God left themhalf-made and incomplete: he created themtobe a commun­ ion of persons, inwhich each can be “helpmate” to the other, for they are equal as persons (“bone of my bones . . .”) and complementary as masculine and feminine. Inmarriage God unites them in such a way that, by forming “one flesh,” 245 they can transmit human life: “Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth.” 246 By transmitting human life to their descendants, man and woman as spouses and parents cooperate in a unique way in the Creator’s work. 247 373 In God’s plan man and woman have the vocation of “sub- duing” the earth 248 as stewards of God. This sovereignty is not to be an arbitrary and destructive domination. God calls man and woman, made in the image of the Creator “who loves everything that exists,” 249 to share in his providence toward other creatures; hence their responsibility for the world God has entrusted to them. IV. M an in P aradise 374 The first man was not only created good, but was also established in friendship with his Creator and in harmony with himself and with the creation around him, in a state that would be surpassed only by the glory of the new creation in Christ. 375 The Church, interpreting the symbolism of biblical lan- guage in an authentic way, in the light of the New Testament and Tradition, teaches that our first parents, Adam and Eve, were constituted in an original “state of holiness and justice.” 250 This grace of original holiness was “to share in . . . divine life.” 251 376 By the radiance of this grace all dimensions of man’s life were confirmed. As long as he remained in the divine intimacy, man would not have to suffer or die. 252 The inner harmony of the human person, the harmony between man and woman, 253 and finally the harmony between the first couple and all creation, comprised the state called “original justice.” 245 Gen 2:24. 246 Gen 1:28. 247 Cf. GS 50 § 1. 248 Gen 1:28. 249 Wis 11:24. 250 Cf. Council of Trent (1546): DS 1511. 251 Cf. LG 2. 252 Cf. Gen 2:17; 3:16, 19. 253 Cf. Gen 2:25. 1652, 2366 307 2415 54 1997 1008, 1502