California’s Central Valley is in the middle of a transition. The region produces nearly half of the country’s produce, but thanks to recreational cannabis legalization and gigantic greenhouses, the area is also becoming a hub for big business cannabis production. However, one of those Central Valley bud providers is not like the others - The Sisters of the Valley are an all-women collective of self-professed “weed nuns,” and they’re out to heal the world and prove that women can be independent in the ganja game.
According to Reuters, the group was founded in 2014 by 58 year-old Christine Meeusen, or Sister Kate, and despite the name, the Sisters of the Valley are in no way associated with the Catholic Church. In fact, the group is vocally anti-religion, and dress in the traditional cover-all dress and habit as a way to harken back to the past.
"We're against religion, so we're not a religion. We consider ourselves Beguine revivalists, and we reach back to pre-Christian practices,” Sister Kate said.
Because they aren’t associated with the Catholic Church or any other religious group, the Sisters have no shame in their profit-hungry practices. And while they’ve made $750,000 since they started selling their products in 2015, the Sisters have also dedicated themselves to helping people, including customers and convent members.
"A sister becomes a sister through a commercial relationship and earning a wage or a commission and we want to grow this way because we want to free the women, we don't want to make them more dependent," Sister Kate said.
The women cultivate their own low-THC cannabis plants that fall under the federal guidelines for industrial hemp, so the CBD oils, lotions and balms can be shipped around the country and internationally. The Sisters call themselves “modern day medicine women” thanks to the healing powers of CBD.
The Sisters are in California for the long haul, but thanks to Trudeau’s legalization and Trump’s possible prohibition enforcement, they’ve also got plans for a Canadian home base in the near future.
No matter where they are, though, the Sisters of the Valley will continue to cultivate their holy sacrament and turn it into healing oils and tools to empower women.