**The Cord of Saint Joseph **
The devotion to the Cord of St. Joseph took its rise in the town of Antwerp, Belgium, in 1637, in consequence of a miraculous cure effected by the wearing of this precious girdle. At that time there lived there an Augustinian nun of great piety, named Sr. Elizabeth, who had suffered for three years excruciating pains occasioned by a cruel distemper. She had reached such a stage that the doctors, seeing no possible recourse, declared her death to be inevitable and imminent. Sr. Elizabeth turned to Heaven, and having always been particularly devoted to St. Joseph, she asked him to intercede to Our Lord for her recovery. At the same time she had a cord blessed in the Saint’s honor, girded herself with it, a few days after, as she prayed before st. Joseph’s image, she felt herself suddenly free of the pain. Those who were acquainted with her illness declared her recovery miraculous; an act of authenticity was drawn up with a public notary and the doctor, who happened to be a Protestant, concurred. The miracle was recorded and published at Verona and Rome between 1810-42. During the month of March of the latter year, the Devotion to the Cord came into existence. Cords were blessed in the Church of St. Nicholas, Verona, for hospital patients.
The chapel in the church is dedicated to St. Joseph. Numerous special graces were obtained and the devotion spread to France, all parts of Italy and even to America and Asia. The cord was invoked, not merely as a remedy against physical ailments, but also as a preservative of the virtue of purity.
The Bishop of Verona became aware of the necessity of addressing a supplication to the Congregation of Rites, which he did by letter on January 14, 1859. After a mature examination the Sacred Congregation, in accordance with the request, approved on September 19 of that year, the new formula of blessing and permitted its solemn and private use. Finally the Bishop obtained for the Association of the Cord the privilege of being declared 'primarie," and at the same time His Holiness, Pope Pius IX enriched it with special indulgences.
GRACES ATTACHED TO THE WEARING OF THE CORD
Graces precious to the piety of St. Joseph’s servants are attached to the
wearing of this cord. They are:
- St. Joseph’s special protection;
- Purity of soul;
- The grace of chastity;
- Final perseverance;
- Particular assistance at the hour of death.
NATURE OF THE CORD AND THE MANNER OF WEARING IT
The Cord of St. Joseph should be of thread or cotton, ending at one extremity
in seven knots, indicative of the Seven Joys and Sorrows of St. Joseph. It is worn as a girdle for purity or chastity and humility and around the shoulders for obedience. It ought to be blessed by a priest with the faculties for this blessing. Pius IX approved a special formula for the blessing of the cord of St. Joseph. [See a copy 1964 Roman Ritual-----we do not have one here, sorry].
WHEN YOU RECEIVE YOUR CORD, IT WILL BE A LONG CORD WITH A KNOT AT EACH END.
AT ONE END YOU WILL NEED TO MAKE 6 KNOTS TO ADD TO THE ONE ALREADY THERE. THIS IS THE PART OF THE CORD THAT HANGS FREE AFTER TYING ABOUT THE WAIST OR SHOULDER.