If you believe in the healing powers of marijuana and if you like the idea of “sisters” in catholic dresses cooking “pain relieving” cannabis infused products, the chances are you heard about The Sisters of the Valley, dubbed “California weed nuns”.
Self-proclaimed nuns, who also admit that they have no religious ties whatsoever, they live in a quirky commune in the Central Valley California growing and harvesting their own cannabis plants. Their sisterhood consists of seven members and they claim they are there on a mission to “empower people to heal themselves”. The concept seems to have worked well. Their medicinal marijuana business—an online shop started back in 2015—has done very well. Last year alone the weed nuns raked $750,000.
The ladies describe their cannabis convent as “spiritual environment” and their work “a prayerful time”. They use the cannabis low on THC (the component that makes you high) to make salves, tinctures, and oils, which they say are designed to sooth pain. They consider themselves nuns because “they are there to heal the sick”.
The “spiritual” concept of their weed products, while probably winning a solid customer base, is also an excellent PR move. Media attention and a series of bizarre photos of what looked like nuns smoking joints, made them even more popular. “The product demand was so high it was hard to keep up with it, and local media attention further increased demand,” one of the sisters said.
In California, recreational use of marijuana was legalized in November 2016 and will be in effect as of January 2018. However the drug remains illegal at a federal level and is labeled a Schedule I substance along with heroin and LSD. Yet, the sisters are happy with their profits and even think about getting some more guns and fences to protect their cannabis covenant from potential bandits.
“Our plan is to have round the clock security until we feel safe: guns, gates, fences—but none of that thrills me,” sister Kate told Refinery 29.