The Religious Impact of Elvis Presley

In this section we wish to gather some articles and information from other websites highlighting the impact Elvis has on a diversity of religious and superstitious beliefs. When doing in-depth searches on the web it comes to light that several sites dwelling on “Elvis-faith” and cults believing Elvis to be a Messiah (or some kind of High Priest) no longer seems to be vigorous. These philosophies and ideas were flourishing in the late 90s, but now several of the sites has simply ceased to exist. No matter what… there’s still a huge amount of interesting information to get out there… Enjoy!

The Elvis Séance

In 1994 some Elvis fans joined in an “Elvis séance”. Here we present a teaser of an article posted on their website;

The Elvis Séance: A real séance conducted in January.

Greetings to fans of the King: My friends and I, being avid Elvis fans, recently took part in a special party on his birthday (January 8th, 1994). This party included a séance wherein we were lucky enough to make contact with Elvis Presley Himself. Due to this being (in our minds) an historic occurrence which would be of relevance to all rock and roll fans and the world at large, we feel that it is necessary for us to share the contents of our discussion with you all.

Following is the list of the questions we posed to the King via homemade Ouiji Board, and the answers we got, followed by a brief interpretation:

Question: Elvis, are you in this room? Answer: Yes…

You can read the whole article here.

Source; The Elvis Séance – “A real seance conducted in January” (http://www.ibiblio.org/elvis/seance.html)

The First Church of Jesus Christ, Elvis

A group or cult called “The First Church of Christ, Elvis” has a website that seems to be an introduction to their ideology. The first thing you lay your eyes on when you open the website is a picture where Elvis is appearing as a Jesus-character, followed by this statement; “For unto you is born this day in the city of Memphis a Presley, which is Elvis the King”. This for sure looks a lot like something we have read elsewhere… They show no respect what so ever of the texts origin, and “borrow” (read; steal) generously from the Bible.

Furthermore the website presents a series of incoherent statements; “Who is this King of Rock-n-Roll? The Lord of Hostess, he is the King of Rock-n-Roll. Shaboom”, “Return, we beseech the, O Lord of Hostess: look down from Heaven, and behold, and visit this mall...” and “And Elvis so loved the world that he died, fat and bloated, in a bathroom”.

Further comments should be entirely unnecessary. In my honest opinion… it is highly unlikely that this is any serious attempt to create an “Elvis-religion”.

The site has no content besides what is presented on their front page.

Author; Admin ELVIS the ICON / Source; The First Church of Jesus Christ, Elvis (http://hyperdiscordia.crywalt.com/sacred_heart_elvis.html)

First Presleyterian Church of Elvis the Divine

Here we present one of the alleged “Elvis churches”. They got a website running (though not updated since 2009) where they present their beliefs. To put it simple; this is way, WAY out there!

Church History (taken from their website)

The First Presleyterian Church Australia was founded late in 1998. On a spiritual quest, Minister Anna stumbled upon the Church after realising her profound love for The King and truly acknowledging his divine qualities. For years Minister Anna had felt the divine presence of Elvis with her, in fact, she'd travelled each, and every, highway. But more, much more than this, she wanted to do it her way... So she vowed to continue her relentless pursuit of spiritual truth “Verily, I shall not rest!” she was heard to cry out to the masses “In sooth, you are nothing but a bunch of hound dogs” she was heard to say. Minister Anna eventually found the long sought after answers in America, where the Reverend Farndu and Dr Edwards were carving a pathway through America's heartland with their own special dose of religion and Rock n' Roll based upon the word of Elvis Himself. And so she had come to the end of her quest, she had arrived at The First Presleyterian Church of Elvis the Divine. Many minutes of studying Church texts convinced Anna that she had finally found the Truth about Elvis, a fact that the Reverend Farndu had known all along. Minister Anna celebrates her ordination with the King. “Truly, Elvis has a hunka-hunka burning love for whosoever believeth in Him,” said Rev. Farndu, pastor of the new church. Elvis sightings are proof of the King's divinity, said Dr. Edwards, church theologian. The resurrection of Elvis is the fundamental belief of Presleyterian faith, he said. “Sing His praises and praise His singing,” Dr. Edwards exulted. “For Elvis is our rock AND our roll.”

The founders spent five years developing church doctrine and sacred rituals before going public with the new religion. Presleyterians are required to face Las Vegas daily and make a pilgrimage to Graceland at least once during their lives. Most importantly, Rev. Farndu said, all church members are required to overindulge in worldly pleasures. Presleyterians also believe that children should be forced to praise Elvis daily. “Back in the 50s, everyone in public school worshipped Elvis. There's been a steady decline in our educational values and morals since we've taken the King out of the classroom,” Rev. Farndu intoned.

Church dietary laws are strict, Dr. Edwards said. Every Preseleyterian home must always be stocked with the 31 Holy Items, which Elvis kept religiously at Graceland at all times. Included among the sacraments are ground round meat, and banana pudding (to be made fresh each night). Any home missing even a single item on the holy list is courting disaster, Dr. Edwards warned the new Minister Anna. When Elvis is sighted in an area, He could drop by your house. “Imagine if Elvis was on your very street and He passed over your house because you didn't have that banana pudding,” Dr. Edwards said. “Or if you had it -- but it wasn't fresh.”

Impressed by Anna's willingness to learn, her recitation of Elvis lyrics, huge back catalogue of Elvis movies, and her devoted study to Church texts, after much deliberation it was decided Anna would be ordained. As the first ordained Minister of the religion, outside the founders themselves, Anna felt it was her duty to return to Australia and share her exciting new knowledge amongst the unenlightened masses. So The First Presleyterian Church of Elvis The Divine-Australia was born.

Admin’s Note; There is at the present moment no web-site up and running for the original First Presleyterian Church of Elvis the Divine. Is the whole thing put six-feet-under so to speak? For more information I recommend this site; Elvis the Divine (http://www.drabruzzi.com/elvis_the_divine.htm)

Source; First Presleyterian Church of Elvis the Divine (http://www.geocities.ws/presleyterian_church/home.html)

The Church of Elvis: Art by Ian Dunlop

The artist and musician Ian Dunlop makes “Elvis-art”… with vibrant religious undertones.

Ian Dunlop is known for his collaboration with country musician Gram Parsons, and Dunlop was a member of the alternative country bands International Submarine Band and The Flying Burrito Brothers.

Dunlop states; “The impact of living during the golden era of Rock 'n' Roll and, as a young boy, witnessing the emergence of Elvis has never left me”. In 2007, on the occasion of the 30 year anniversary of Elvis' death, Ian Dunlop created the artwork “The Church of Elvis”. On his webpage he has linked to this artwork… “Click here to worship at the Church of Elvis!”

Dunlop has also created a number of paintings with Elvis motifs called “The Elvis Beatitudes”. He has even made the artwork “Elvis Shrine” out of wood, relief, bits and candles.

Visit his website for more information.

Author; Admin ELVIS the ICON / Source; The Church of Elvis Art (http://www.churchofelvisart.com/Into%20the%20Church%20Table.html), Ian Dunlop Art (http://www.iandunlopart.com/)

The “Elvis Reverend”

This is a real oddity in the world of Elvis and religion…

“Christ the King Graceland Independent Anglican Church of Canada” is an independent congregation in Newmarket, Ontario, Canada. The church officially opened on January 5th, 2003, with approximately 270 people and a huge press corps attending the sermon (including CBS, CNN and NBC).

This Anglican parish is led by Archbishop Dorian Baxter, aka "Elvis Priestley". The Reverends appearances (with black Elvis 70s look-a-like-hair, and sideburns), his performing of songs about Elvis during mass, and pictures of the “King of Rock ’n’ Roll” on display on the platform, surely makes this congregation and its leader quite something far from the mainstream. 

Though… on their website (click here to visit) it appears as a conventional congregation.

Author; Admin ELVIS the ICON / Source; Wikipedia – “Christ the King Graceland Independent Anglican Church of Canada” (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christ_the_King_Graceland_Independent_Anglican_Church_of_Canada), Christ the King Graceland Independent Anglican Church of Canada (http://www.christthekinggraceland.ca/)

Saint Elvis Presley Prayer Candles

On Etsy.com they sell something called “Saint Elvis Presley Prayer Candles”. On one of the sets, which have the subtitle “Illuminidol”, there’s even an Illuminati logo on the wrapping. The candles are manufactured (handmade) in Wichita, Kansas. There’s obviously people out there that got a need to keep the light of Elvis burning in a more literally sense.

Author; Admin ELVIS the ICON / Source; www.etsy.com

The Day Elvis Presley Attended Early Morning Seminary

Even The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormons) claim a connection to Elvis. Here we present a teaser of an article posted on a popular Mormon lifestyle website in January 2015;

Elvis didn't relish his title of King. As he said, “there is only one King”, and that was Jesus Christ (Brother Paul’s Mormon Bathroom Reader, Paul B. Skousen, 2005).

Deeply religious and a heavy reader of spiritual topics, Elvis showed considerable interest in the LDS Church and maintained many close connections with Mormons. In fact, after his death, a copy of the Book of Mormon was found in his room with the message, “Priscilla needs to read this” written within the well-worn cover (Brother Paul’s Mormon Bathroom Reader, Paul B. Skousen, 2005).

Elvis received his first Book of Mormon through the gates of Graceland, his home in Memphis. A young LDS woman and ardent Elvis fan, Cricket Butler, often sat vigilantly outside his home or hotel—coming early in the morning and staying late in the night—waiting for a chance to speak with her idol. Butler’s persistence finally paid off when late one evening Elvis walked out to his gates to visit with Butler. During their conversation on life and its purpose, Butler handed him a copy of the Book of Mormon… You can read the whole article here.

Source; Danielle Beckstrom - “The Day Elvis Presley Attended Early Morning Seminary” (http://ldsliving.com/story/77866-the-day-elvis-presley-attended-early-morning-seminaryThis extract of the article is used by permission of the author.