Wednesday, August 15, 2007


At GetReligion, on the 30th anniversary of his death, a reflection on Elvis and gospel by Terry Mattingly:
Frankly, evangelicals have never known what to do with Elvis. He represents the down side of both emotional, charismatic (in several senses of that word) Protestantism and the rise of the whole culture of sex, drugs and rock & roll.

As I wrote a few years ago, in a column that ended up in my book:
No picture of Elvis is complete without faith, as well as failure. He was not the first or the last devout country boy to stray in the big city.

. . . If there is a cautionary tale here, it is another reminder that believers should be careful when dealing with heroes.

. . . The boy who made his profession of faith in a Baptist church in Tupelo, Miss., struggled to hold on to that faith for the rest of his life. The Elvis story is packed with pain, piety, sin, struggle, glory, guilt and repentance.
YouTube has a number of clips of Elvis singing gospel. This seems to be an informal performance:
Elvis never left the church (in his heart) » GetReligion

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