In 2001, I was confronted for my increasing alcoholic behavior—drinking at work, which happens to be a church—and a visible lack of ability to function.
As a result, I went to Silver Hill Hospital in New Canaan, Connecticut. The gifts I received there gave me the foundation of recovery that continues today.
After four years I was able to return to Silver Hill as the onsite chaplain. The many gifts of recovery and the opportunity to work with those in recovery and their families are amazing.
Much of my work as a priest reflects what I have learned from meetings, sponsors, reading, and study. The wisdom I have discovered, as I see my Higher Power working through others, continues to be awesome.
The acknowledgement that spirituality plays a major role in recovery by clinicians encourages my own ministry.
As chair of two diocesan committees on substance abuse, I have discovered that education of clergy is critical to helping so many who are in harm's way. I continue as a parish priest in transition ministry where I can have a role in change.
I try to follow the example of the many in recovery before me, while the support group to which I belong and all who attend remain anonymous. I am open about my continuing recovery so I can teach, counsel, and write.
I encourage public awareness and clergy understanding, and I am an advocate for legislative support for equality in insurance coverage for addiction recovery and mental illness.
–The Rev’d Hugh Tudor-Foley