Actress-Turned-Nun Who Kissed Elvis Seeks Donations for Crumbling Abbey
The woman who gave Elvis his first on-screen kiss is asking for $9 million to restore her crumbling abbey.
Mother Dolores Hart, 76, starred in 10 movies before leaving Hollywood in 1963 to become a nun at the age of 25.
More than 50 years later, she’s seeking about $9 million in donations to restore Abbey of Regina Laudis in rural Connecticut.
The most recent version of the renovation plan, dubbed New Horizons, calls for a new chapel (the ceiling is sagging), housing and other environmentally friendly and disabled accessible spaces to live and pray.
Among other things, the nuns need to install new wiring and insulation to prevent the constant freezing of pipes in the winter, fix the falling gutters, replace rotting wood and get rid of the black mold that can be seen growing on the ceiling of the former barn that now houses the print shop, bakery and sewing room.
More than anything, they need more space — common areas and places where people can reflect without bumping into one another. They have no conference room and currently no way to walk inside from one end of the monastery to the other without going through the chapel and disturbing those who are praying there.