Sister Edith Myflesh
20 October 2001
In the Beginning…
While I was still employed, one of the projects that I worked on was our company charity committee. I was co-chair of our west coast committee and we were responsible for planning events and raising money in the name of the Company. Our guidelines in this were that it had to be a local organisation and it had to be relatively conservative to match the conservative views of the Company. Of course, this ruled out nearly all of the groups that I really wanted to help. So, I decided that I would also dedicate some of my time to helping the charities that I wanted to work with.

I had lived in the city for quite a while by this point and was certainly familiar with the Sisters and their works. And, as a lot of the charities that they raised money for intersected with my own personal interests, I decided that they would be the best group to volunteer for. I think at some point during this time I had this outrageous thought that I would be a Sister myself. But, at the time, it was just a wild idea.

After exploring the Sisters' site, I got myself on their calendar mailing list and started volunteering for events when they asked. And boy did I choose an amazing first event to get involved with them.

The first event that I took part in was the Sisters' street fair, Pink Saturday. For Pink Saturday, the Sisters cordon off Castro street and ask for donations at the various gates. I think one of the coolest parts is that if you were to view the Pink Saturday party area from the sky, it would take the shape of a giant cross, with the top of the cross up at 19th and Castro running down to Market and Castro, and the cross arms on 18th, from Collingwood to Hartford. And I was familiar with each of the arms.

During the first part of my shift, I played gopher, running from gate to gate making sure that the Sisters and volunteers had water and were staying warm. I can still remember some of the poor Russian River Sisters who were up on 19th: a cold wind was whipping down the street at high speeds and those poor girls had on these short little skirts. Sister Sparkle Plenty was so cold she was shivering. And yet, she stayed and smiled and worked it.

Pink Saturday was also my first introduction to the formidable Sister Betty. One of the taller Sisters, and the only Sister who doesn't wear whiteface. Sister Betty and I hauled water and candy from gate to gate and generally made sure that everyone was okay.

Towards the end of the evening, after my official shift was over, I was "stationed" at the entrance to the Sisters' headquarters for the event. Ostensibly, my job was to make sure no one got in who wasn't supposed to be inside. Really, I just kind of hung around and chatted with Sister Hedra and a couple of the other nuns and volunteers.

This was also where I was stationed to witness Sister Donatella receive her white veil. Yet another fond memory of mine, the ceremony was a lovely, awe inspiring event, made all the more amazing by the fact that I was "back stage". Much universal joy was propagated that night and I still smile when I think of dancing with Sister Donatella to "Lady Marmalade".

I think that this event was an excellent first introduction to the Sisters. We worked really hard to make sure that the event was a success. And we played really hard at the same time. And for me, Sister Gina pinning that white veil on Sister Donatella's wimple was an act of grace and love and togetherness the likes of which I don't think I had ever seen before.
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