Chris Raleigh grew up in Cottonwood Heights, Utah, and served in the Pennsylvania, Philadelphia Mission. He has a bachelor’s degree in business, a master’s degree in education, and has taught for 28 years in both public and private school settings—including 23 years as a seminary and institute instructor. His Church assignments have included callings in the elders quorum, Sunday School, high council, bishopric, and as a bishop and stake president. In his current assignment he serves with his wife, Peggy, on the Church’s Corrections Committee ministering to both Church leaders and inmates in six county jails and the Central Utah Correctional Facility in Gunnison, Utah. Chris and Peggy have nine children and 14 grandchildren.
In this podcast, Chris candidly shares a decades-long struggle. His desire is to lend hope through the Atonement of Jesus Christ to the many men and women who feel trapped within the grasp of the illness called addiction. Trying to reverse four generations of addiction within his family has not been easy but he knows it is possible.
1:30 Chris talks about his background and faith development
7:00 Family history of addiction
17:00 Chris’ personal story and struggle with pornography addiction
27:00 Chris was always looking for a “cure” for his problem. He thought teaching seminary or becoming a bishop would help him but the struggle was always there.
30:30 Good people struggle with very hard things. It’s not about being flawless but worthy.
33:00 We normally see vulnerability as a strength in others but a weakness in ourselves.
34:00 Kurt and Chris discuss his time as a Bishop and his continual struggle to stay away from pornography. No matter how hard he tried it just kept coming back.
43:20 Becoming a Stake President and dealing with his addiction
52:00 Getting to a place of healing and getting help from a general authority
55:15 Telling his wife and her struggle with betrayal trauma. Chris shares their marriage struggles.
59:45 Getting divorced, getting released as a stake president, and getting terminated as a seminary teacher. He continued to seek healing, recovery, and find blessings when life was falling apart.
1:04:45 Chris shares how God has blessed him for telling his story. He has rebuilt his life and remarried.
1:09:00 Chris had to walk a hard path to get where he is. He prayed for years and years to be rid of his addiction but he needed to go through treatment first. He had to be ready.
1:10:00 By healing and recovering, Chris is also helping his ancestors who struggled with addiction.
1:13:00 There is hope for everyone. However, addiction is an illness and it needs treatment.
1:16:45 The power of telling your story
1:17:45 To the lonely leader that is struggling with sin. The bravery to speak up.