Documentary About Marijuana-Growing Nuns Released On 4/20

A documentary about nuns who grow marijuana is being released today - yep, 20 April (or 4/20 if we go with the Stateside date format), which many of you will know is the annual day of note for marijuana lovers.

Sister Kate Meeusen started the Sisters of the Valley in 2011 with just 12 plants, but now it's an international operation, which brings in a whopping $1.1 million (£769,500) in sales each year.

Sister Kate's lucrative operation is explored in the new documentary, Breaking Habits, which comes from British filmmaker Rob Ryan.

"I've seen the film so many times I'm sick of it - I didn't like it but everyone else likes it so I'm happy about that," said Sister Kate, 60, who makes and sells CBD products such as salves and oils with her sisterhood.

Sister Kate. Credit: SWNS
Sister Kate. Credit: SWNS

The film looks at the history and sustained survival of the nuns' weed-growing, in particular how Sister Kate and her team have fought against 'white man rule', including the obstructionist county sheriff and black market thieves.

"We don't like the white man rule," said Sister Kate, who resides in Merced County, California, with her community of sisters.

"Farm people are very slow to adapt to new ideas. People are stuck in the 1950s with their ideas towards the cannabis plant for medicinal use."

So far, Sister Kate has tried to cure eight people of addictions using her CBD products, claiming they have all recovered.

The Sisters of the Valley. Credit: SWNS
The Sisters of the Valley. Credit: SWNS

"We have a 100 percent success rate in curing people of their addictions," explained Sister Kate, who used to work as a high-flying corporate executive before turning to weed farming.

"Admittedly we don't have a huge sample size; we worked with eight people who were addicted to either alcohol, tobacco or meth, but they all got better."

"That's a better success rate than Alcoholics Anonymous."

The Sisters of the Valley crew also use CBD to try and treat everything from epilepsy to cancer.

The sisters' CBD products. Credit: SWNS
The sisters' CBD products. Credit: SWNS

Sister Kate continued: "It's a wonderfully healing plant. Gradually the world is starting to open up to the idea of cannabis as medicine, rather than treating it as a dangerous drug."

According to Breaking Habits director Rob Ryan, Sister Kate's fight to change the cannabis industry from 'stoner to healer' is both genuine and heartfelt.

"It's a story about a woman taking on the local establishment to change the law on cannabis in the healing sense," he said of the film.

The doc is just one part of the sisters' plans for the global expansion of the medicinal marijuana empire.

"We intend to have enclaves in every town and province in the next 20 years," said Sister Kate.

"We're going to be doing more and more with Hollywood, because that's the megaphone to the world.

"We're also planning an edgy, political series, done in cartoon form."

The Sisters of the Valley. Credit: SWNS
The Sisters of the Valley. Credit: SWNS

On Monday (22 April) the activist nuns will be protesting the ecclesiastic privilege, which allows some abuse to go unreported.

"We are accustomed to fighting for the rights of the marginalised," said Sister Kate.

"It's an important bill that would allow California to join some 20 other states and Canada in denying this privilege as an excuse for not reporting abuse.

"If a clergy-person, an elder, a priest [or] a pastor sees abuse, they must report it. Just like cops and nurses and teachers are required to do.

"They don't get to hide behind their sacred code of protecting one another anymore. It is the age of the divine feminine and there is no divinity in harming children.

"There is no divinity in granting men access to children for perverse victimisation, for ruination of their lives.

"Yet, these male-run, male-founded, male-protected organisations don't want us messing with their privileges."

G'wan, sister!

Breaking Habits is in cinemas and on Digital HD from 26th April.

Featured Image Credit: SWNS

Jess Hardiman

Jess Hardiman is a journalist who graduated from Manchester University with a BA in Film Studies, English Language and Literature, and has previously worked for Time Out and The Skinny among others.

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