About The Fourth City Sisters
“We are a house of service, ministry, and outreach to our LGBTQ community and others in need. We promote human rights, respect, diversity and spiritual enlightenment for all humankind. Our focuses are bringing awareness to HIV/AIDS prevention and treatment, gender issues, the eradication of bullying, and teaching others the value of self-worth.”
About The Fourth City Sisters
We are The Fourth City Sisters of the Abbey of the Glittering Arch of Saint Louis, Missouri, Inc. Saint Louis, MO USA , a Fully Professed House of the Sisterhood of Perpetual Indulgence, and we are here to Spread Joy and Legs! as we encourage members of the greater St. Louis metropolitan area to Go Out and Sin Some More!
We are a house of service, ministry, and outreach to our LGBTQ community and others in need. We promote human rights, respect, diversity and spiritual enlightenment for all humankind. Our focuses are bringing awareness to HIV/AIDS prevention and treatment, gender issues, the eradication of bullying, and teaching others the value of self-worth.
As our house recently elevated to a Fully Professed House, some of our members sought recognition, others glory; but what I think our house wants most is a family and community to be a part of and serve. We grow up believing that family is unconditional love, support, and occasional tough love, and that’s what we want and what we want to be for others. We want to show our community as much love as possible. We want to support them, hold space for them, and raise their voices. And we want to be part of the SPI family, which is filled with our mentors and heroes. We want to share the traditions of a 40 year old institution with the Saint Louis community and bring some Saint Louis craziness to the SPI.
We believe that every member of our community should be free to express themselves and become their true selves. We hope to make this possible by being the weirdest fucking bitches in the room, allowing others to feel comfortable being their truest selves without fear or guilt. We believe in sex positivity, empowerment, and equality and aren’t afraid to fight for it through sermons and blessings. We are the Fourth City Sisters and we are here to go out and sin some more!
If you tried to picture the type of person who would use our slogan, “Spreading Joy and Legs, Go Out and Sin Some More!”, we’re about what you would imagine. We are Queer, kinky, poly, and we genderfuck just about better than anyone else. We are activists. We fight against white supremacy, injustice, homophobia, and transphobia. We are sacred clowns; we have fun and make sure that everyone gets at least one speck of glitter on them before the end of the night, using our image and antics to challenge authority and oppression. We are nuns. We cry with our community, mourn with our community, and celebrate with our community through blessings and manifestation. We are the Fourth City Sisters and we are a family that is one of a kind.
The Fourth City Sisters of the Abbey of the Glittering Arch are not the first, second, or third rendition of the SPI in Saint Louis, however we humbly believe we will be the last. Our members come from across the nation, many of us having rubbed glittery elbows with wonderful SPI chapters on the way until the calling of sisterhood was finally heard in St. Louis. The house was founded by six individuals, Sister EllaWhore von Tramp, Sister Lorelei von Tramp, Sister Freedom Bubbles, Sister Belly Davis, Sister Busta Nutt, and Guard Mame O. Reese but currently is home to 1 Nun of the Above, a whole family of Sisters, Novices, Aspirants, Guards, and one Guardian Angel. As we have grown, we have become a unique house full of diverse members, in both mission and identity. You will find cis, trans, Intersex, and gender non-confiming individuals; monogamous and polyamorous folk; pagans, atheists, Buddhists, Christians; gay, bisexual, asexual, and pansexual members; white, black, indigenous, and latinx people; and more. We are the modern queer community and we are all in humble service of our community. As such we bring more gender fluidity as well as equality to our table, focusing on the importance of the non-binary and genderfuckery, as well as recognizing our Guards\Friars as equal to Sisters in every capacity. We aim to expiate stigmatic guilt and bring joy to the greater community, but many of us also have personal causes and missions. Some missions of individual sisters in the house include HIV prevention and advocacy, LGBTQ youth, empowerment of the Transgender community, and more. Our myriad of perspectives have blended together to create a house of dramatic as fuck sinning sonovabitches.
Finding the perfect dress or outfit is a skill every sister must come to face. We have sisters that buy secondhand, get gifted, take hot glue to a item from wish, or make it all by hand. Here are some our favorite dresses and their stories!
One of our more iconic portraits is that of Sr. EllaWhore von Tramp, our Nun of the Above. The portrait was taken during the City of Fountain Sister’s Exequitar in 2018. Sr Ella and I were very excited for the opportunity to meet with other Sisters from around the country, and share the joy felt by the Sisters of Kansas City, our mentor house.
Because of that close mentorship, we knew that when we made it to KC, our first stop would have to be Wonderland, the amazing shop owned by Sister Glamarama Ding Dong. While catching up, sharing hugs and hellos, of course we also browsed the amazing wares in our Sister’s store. We took in all the glittering jewelry, vintage dresses, coats and shoes around us, when Sister EllaWhore came upon a gorgeous black velvet dress that he instantly fell in love with. It’s rich metallic threading, dramatic V-cut bodice and full velvet skirt were everything she had been looking for.
We knew that dress needed to be her’s, but it was made even more so when Sister Glamarama told us the story of the dress. As the previous owner’s daughter had told her, the Chinoiserie inspired dress was custom made for her mother, a woman who had originally owned a local porn palace, the Strand, in KC. She apparently had a lot of “very colorful friends” and they loved to dress up and have fancy parties. She opened The Strand Up above the original theater for her friends to cater to the gay clientele.
Of course, we bought the dress, and were amazed to find out that at the night of the final gala of the Exequitar, The Sisters of Kansas City arranged for Shane Linden to take formal portraits of all the Sisters in attendance. Which led us to this moment saved forever, a moment of pride and joy, of communion with our world-wide Sisters. A moment that solidified our drive to bring our House up and continue our mission to our own community.
In 2019, our House suffered a terrible loss when Sister EllaWhore joined the Nuns of Above. While she was Abbess of our House, she was even more to me. She was also my husband and partner of eighteen years. She inspired me in life and in our Sisterhood, and with St. Louis’ annual Pride Festivities coming up, I knew that whatever I did, I would have to honor her.
Sister EllaWhore was an individual with so many ideas, we often found ourselves buying supplies that unfortunately never came to fruition. One of these supplies was a large hoop skirt that she was excited to wear, yet never found a dress to wear with it. I knew that the skirt was going to find its way into my wardrobe after that.
Roughly a week before the Pride Parade, inspiration finally hit. I had vision of rainbows swirling about me, circles of color and tulle floating around me as I pranced about the streets of St. Louis. I spent the next few nights with yards of rainbow fabric in my lap, gluing it bit by bit around the skirt (and many a burn from the glue gun littering my fingers). With only a few hours left before the parade, I finally had my vision completed. Sister EllaWhore’s hoop skirt with rows of rainbow tulle flowing down, top to bottom – our Pride in loops, painfully attached with hours of devotion.
For the parade, I walked out in that skirt, with only a pair of suspenders and bikini top covering the rest of me. With the strength of my own soul, raised by the power of Sister EllaWhore’s love and my House’s support, I raised joy and love for our City’s LGBTQIA+ community. It is a moment of Joy and Pride that I will carry with me for the rest of my days.
The Fourth City Sisters has allied themselves with these organizations: