Sister Hellen's SPI Family

The Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence's initiation process for becoming a Nun, Priest, Guard or other member of an Order involves many things including sponsorship from existing fully Professed Members.  Traditionally, we have referred to our primary Sponsor as our "Mother".  So every new member who joins an Order has at least one mother.  We also have co-sponsors that have been known as Big Sister or Godmothers who help "raise" the new member.  Because of this structure, the Sisters sometimes refer to the mother/daughter relationship as family lines.  Of course there are a few issues with viewing these relationships as a family tree...  New members may change their primary sponsor more than once.  There is only one primary sponsor as opposed to a mother and father that bio families have.  And last, in the early days of the San Francisco Order,

The Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence have a long history of sponsoring new Nuns.  We affectionately refer to our primary sponsors as our "Mothers" and any additional sponsors as either Big Sisters or God Mothers.  So based on that Sisters can trace their lineage forward, backwards an sideways to other members.  Of course, like most dysfunctional families, there are divorces, abortions and adoptions too. So with out further ado, I present Sister Hellen's clan members didn't necessarily need sponsorship.  We refer to those days as the, "Poof, you're a Nun!" days.

Anyways... the following is my current point of view on my family tree. Bush. Vine. Oh hell!  Vegetable-based-life-form. 

Sister Hellen Wheels, Acting Superior Mother of the Daughters of the Divine Eruption

That would be me.

The Ancestors

Sister Dana Van Iquity

Lets start with Hellen's Mother and only sponsor.  Technically, Dana was Father Butch's Mother.  It should be noted that Dana is my Mother, Sister and Father.  I am her Daughter, Son, Brother and Mother ...but that's another LOOONG story. Sister Dana started with The Sister in 1985 and was fully professed later that year.  She has been the Mistress of Novice, Mistress of Press and general public relations whore for the San Francisco Bay TImes; witting more columns under Sr. Dana that even she can count!  OK, so math really isn't Dana's thing.

Sister Mysteria of the Holy Order of the Broken Hymen 

Dana's Mother and Hellen's Grandmother. Dana was also sponsored by Sister Boom Boom.  Mystie was the first official biologically female Sister in any Order.  She began with the Sisters in 1984 and was affectionately known as 'Grandma' by Hellen. ...either that or 'dirty granny Mystie.'  Mystie would tell the new gurls in the Order about the old days and what life was like for a Nun while we were still more gorilla theater than non-profit organization.  She'd then invite them to sit on her lap which was always a learning experience. Sister Mystie passed through the veil in 2011 and joined the Nuns of the above.  We will miss her.

Sister Marquesa de Sade

Mystie's Mother, Marquesa stared with the San Francisco Sisters in 1982.  Know for her catsuits and holey fishnets, she never wore anything other than black with occasional white trim. Marquesa was also a Novice Mistress; probably the most feared as she was rarely without her riding crop. Believe me, she did know how to use it too!  Sr. Marquesa preceeded Mystie in passing through the veil in 1996.

Sister Boom Boom aka Sister Rose of the Blood Stains of Jesus Christ

Sister Boom Boom is one of the most renowned Sisters for many reasons.  Probably most famous is her run for San Francisco Board of Supervisors as Boom Boom; he lost by the slimmest of margins.  His campaign slogan touted who to vote for, "Nun of the Above."  His main post is now a collector's item featuring Boom Boom riding a broomstick ala The Wicked Witch in Wizard of Oz, skywriting, "Surrender Diane" in reference to then Mayor Diane Finestein.  Boom Boom Resigned her membership just before Dana was fully professed, leaving Mystie as Dana's only full-term Mother.  Although never getting to spend time with Boom Boom in habit, he has bestowed loads of information on me about the early years and inspired me to keep a sense of humor about all religious beliefs including my own.

Sister Vicious Power Hungry Bitch

Marquesa's Mother and Hellen's Great Great Granny!  As you should know by now, Vish is a Founder and was there literally from the beginning (maybe earlier.) Know for her political activism, Sister Vish is still helping to steer the SF House toward causes for the downtrodden and under represented.  Great Great Grandma Vish is the defacto "Grand dame" of SPI as he has been manifesting in public for a very, very long time!

The Sibling

Sister Kitty Catalyst OCP

Kitty is Dana's only other surviving daughter and mother to a gaggle of SF Sisters of her own.  Kitty, Dana and Hellen were think as thieves back in the day and may have pushed the envelope of "Indulgence" more than any other trio of Nuns did without getting caught by the police or censured by the Order!  Lots of weird, wonderful and surreal stuff came out of our friendship and Kitty's "hit and nun" style of Sistering; most infamously being the Sister Socks Show.  If you haven't experienced the SSS, then you haven't really met the Sisters. 
Just sayin'...


The Kids

Sister GladAss of the Joyous Reserectum

Hellen's first daughter.  Sister Julia Sunbeam was originally GladAss's Mother, but abandoned the poor little waif mid-term so that Hellen had to complete the birthing process.  Now days, that wouldn't be allowed as GladAss and Hellen were married and we no longer allow significant others to sponsor, but we only had 10 fully professed members to choose from and most already had obligations.  Anywho, GladAss started with the San Francisco Sisters in 1991 and was fully professed in 1992.  She then moved down to the South Lands aka Los Angeles and acted as the founding sponsoring/member for the LA Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence.  Not to rest on her laurels, GladAss also was senior adviser to the Palm Springs Sisters when they formed as well.

Sister GiGi Fa'Q, the French Whore

Hellen's second daughter.  I met GiGi at a Imperial Court Investiture in 1995 and she instantly became friends with Dana, Kitty and moi.  GiGi was fully professed in the San Francisco Order in 1996.  She has been the SF Order's Treasurer, board member and Sexitary.  She also is the Mother of many more Nuns including Gina Tonic.  Sadly (for me anyway) GiGi moved back to her native Paris and went on to help reunite the Paris Order.  She continues to pop out new Nuns to this day.

Sister Tuna Noodle Cocktail aka Guard Tightly Whitey, Spawn of Sister Hellen Wheels

Guard Tighty Whitey is Hellen's first and only son.  Just as you think you're ready to retire and spend your afternoons watching reruns of Gidget and Family Affair, along comes some smooth talking little whipper snapper that cons you into taking them under your wing.  Sheez!  Seriously, when TW asked me to be his mother, I had already made up my mind that I was retiring from the Order.  I really wasn't sure I had it in me to sponsor another member, but agreed just the same.  That was in 2008, and TW was fully professed in 2009.  TW now better known as Sister Tuna Noodle Cocktail has helped run several events as well as being Sexytary and Board Chairnun.  He has helped breath new life into Hellen's profession and the San Francisco Order.

Sister Gina Tonic the Sparkling

Gina is Hellen's first Grand Daughter in the San Francisco Order.  Gina has held many jobs in the Order including President and Mistress of Novices.  She can often be found ministering to the partying masses on safer sex.  She also happened to be one of the Novices Hellen helped raise as Mistress of Novices.  And no I didn't show here any preferential treatment.  Well maybe just a little.

Sister Betty Tasteswell, the Selfrising

Betty is Tuna's first daughter and Hellen's second grand daughter in the SF Order.  Betty is so far breaking the family tradition of being a total whore.  Oh well, there's one black sheep in every family.  Betty's ministry often revolves around youth programing.  That and baking; he's quite the accomplished chef!

Auntie Hellen's Gang

Sister Selma Soul

Selma is Hellen's first Goddaughter, her mother being Sister Bea Attitude. Selma formally joined the Order in 1998 and was fully professed the same year. Selma also known as Saint Cabana Boy and Hellen have been friends for years and Selma has done so many duties for the SF Order that she puts many of us to shame. Selma has also helped many new members get their footing in the Order.

Sister Sharin' Dipity Reveal

Sister Hellen's second Goddaughter, her mother is Sister Lily White.  Sharin' started her process with the Sisters in 2001 and was fully professed the next year.  Like Selma, Sharin' has taken on many roles for the SF Sisters and has helped many new Sisters join the Order.

Sister Sybil LiberTease

Sib is Hellen's third and last Goddaughter, her mother is Sister Sharin'.  Like so many of the Sisters that I have offered some modest assistance to, Sybil also came along when Hellen was considering backing off from the group.  Syb is a well know character in the Castro District and introduced Hellen and the rest of the Order to lots of new people who have helped us with events and enjoy our short time on this planet more.

Sister KrisTall Mighty of the Towering Virtues

KrisTall is the first of Hellen's Little Sisters.  KrisTall's mother is the delightful Sister Merry Peter.  KT has done numerous outreach projects with the San Francisco Order including a project to hand out coats and blankets to the city's homeless on a one-on-one level.  Her efforts helped hundreds if not thousands of disenfranchised San Franciscans make it though the winter and even colder summer nights.  KrisTall has since moved to and helped to found the Cleveland Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence.

Sister Barbra Ganesh

Barbra is Hellen's second Little Sister.  Her mother is the Gracious Sister Titania Humperpickle.  Barbra started her process as a member of the San Francisco Order in 2009 and if all continues well, she'll be a fully professed Nun this year.  Hellen met Barbra through the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts where she directed our 30th Anniversary Show.  Rachel is a highly connected even producer and acclaimed author, not to mention just plain old funny nutjob!  Although I want her to get her black veil soon, I almost hate to lose getting to help sponsor her process.

Sister Agnes Dei'afta Tamara

Also known as Rhoda Balonypony, she is Hellen's last Little Sister (and yes I do mean LAST!)  Agnes has been active in many of the Order's projects and hasn't tied himself down to any specific kind of event.  She's helped set up penny drives, wrangled nuns for Pink Saturday and organized some fabulous sistory lessons for the Order.  He's most happen when helping the other Sisters do their thing.

Hell's illegitimate Hell'ions

Sister MaryMae Hymm of the Havoc Habit

MaryMae is the daughter of Penny Costal.  Although not an official sponsor, Hell and MM were very good friends during her process to gain her black veil and it became a running joke that Hellen wasn't so much her Godmother, but rather her Evil Godmother.  MM first joined the order in 1995 and was fully professed in 1997, but Hellen who had just been elected to the job of Mistress of Novices. MaryMae has been involved with many AIDS related issues with the Order and has gone on to become a Buddhist Monk.  I was very proud to be asked to formal ceremony joining Buddhist Monastery here in San Francisco.

Sister MaryRalph, the Proper Nun

Mary Ralph who's mother happens to be MaryMae, is also affectionately known as Hellen's Evil Goddaughter.  Again, Hellen wasn't an official sponsor, but as a close friend often found herself giving advise and comfort during the little nunling's process though Postulant and Novice.  MR formally joined the Order in 2005 and was fully Professed in 2007.  Since that time, she run way too many events, fundraisers and parties than I'd care to think about.

Of course, over the course of 20+ year, there have been lots of other Sisters in San Francisco and other Orders that I feel very close to, but haven't "officially sponsored."  I think of many Sisters as my family too so in a sense there are lots of little Hell'ions out there...