In the heartland of Mexico, a different kind of Sisterhood gathers. Wrapped in flowing robes, they cleanse with sage, chant prayers to the cannabis plant and inhale deeply from a shared joint. These aren’t your typical nuns. They’re the Sisters of the Valley Mexico, a cannabis-growing collective challenging both religious norms and cartel dominance in a country ravaged by drug war violence.
Although they do not belong to any religious order, the Sisters of the Valley’s devotion is unquestionable. Also known as the “Weed Nuns” founded in 2014 in California, the women are dedicated to growing cannabis and selling medicinal products. In the U.S. they’ve pulled in at least a half-million selling their organic products.
Their Mission In Mexico?
To reclaim marijuana from the clutches of cartel violence and elevate it into a sacred tool for healing and empowerment. In that cannabis is in a legal gray area in Mexico and most of its production is controlled by drug cartels, the nuns say they worry police or local gangsters might threaten or extort them.
For that reason, they operate from a discreet storefront in an undisclosed location, noted Reuters in a special report.
They cultivate modest crops in rooftop gardens, guided by a research chemist-turned-sister who unlocks the plant’s therapeutic potential. Their weekends are busy with pruning, developing salves and sharing knowledge with the surrounding community.
When Reuters visited, they reportedly saw bundles of marijuana dried in clandestine crevices – hanging from a tucked-away laundry line or hidden in the stove.
“The Sisterhood is in a totally different context here in Mexico – because of how religious the country is and because of the plant’s ties to cartels,” said one of the nuns, who calls herself “Sister Bernardet” online but asked that her name not to be used. As part of her main job as a homeopathic practitioner, she prescribes marijuana to her patients with cancer, joint pain and insomnia.
“We want to take the plant back from the narcos,” she said.
One Sister, a former church secretary, shrugs off disapproval from family members. “It’s time to end this stupidity.” Another, who left home at 16 to escape the rigid confines of her evangelical upbringing, found a surprising ally in her mother, who now helps tend their secret cannabis farm.
Read more at Reuters and check out stunning photos
Photo courtesy of El Planteo