Haggard and her husband founded New Life Church in Colorado Springs, in 1985, with meetings in the basement of their home. The church grew to 14,000 members by 2006, with a large campus on the north side of Colorado Springs, Colorado.
In November 2006, Haggard's husband revealed to her that he had engaged in extramarital homosexual activity and drug use. Once this became public the couple were removed from the New Life Church. When Haggard subsequently lost her position as the Director of Women's Ministries due to her husband’s removal from his position as pastor, she told the congregation via a letter written to them, “What I want you to know is that I love my husband, Ted Haggard, with all my heart. I am committed to him until death 'do us part.' We started this journey together and with the grace of God, we will finish together.” She went on to say that she wanted the women of New Life Church to “watch her” as she hoped to prove herself faithful.
Haggard's book Why I Stayed, authored with Angela Hunt, was released in January 2010. The book is the story of her marriage to Ted Haggard and how they survived his infidelity. The book also teaches the fundamental Christian message of forgiveness and restoration while chronicling the events that took place during the three years after the scandal broke.
During her time of ministry at New Life Church, Haggard led a large women's ministry with up to 150 small groups meeting throughout the city. She taught wives of ministry leaders at leadership conferences held at the church. She spearheaded the citywide observance of the National Day of Prayer, making it the second largest event of its kind in the nation.
In 2006, Haggard started a new ministry for women at New Life Church called "Women Belong". Her aim was to teach the message of acceptance and love in the body of Christ. Her message of encouragement for women was featured as a chapter in two separate books, Leading Women to the Heart of God (2002) and Free to Soar (2005). Her first full-length book was written to other wives of pastors and was published in 2004, entitled, A Life Embraced, A Hopeful Guide for the Pastor’s Wife.Celebrity Wife Swap (2012)
Larry King Live
HBO's The Trials of Ted Haggard
In January 2009, following the release of The Trials of Ted Haggard, Haggard and her husband appeared on The Oprah Winfrey Show, Larry King Live, Good Morning America, and other national media programs to offer a public apology and confession for the issues that spurred his resignation in November 2006.
Ted and Gayle Haggard both appeared on the syndicated television show Divorce Court. The program aired for broadcast April 1–2, 2009. On the program, Ted says he wanted his wife to divorce him after the scandal, saying that he thought he had become so "toxic" that divorce was best for Gayle and children. Gayle, however, refused the offer of divorce.
Since the "repentance broadcasts," Ted and Gayle Haggard have been traveling to churches and appearing on radio and television broadcasts. They have also begun to have former church members and friends come to their home for "healing meetings," in which Ted Haggard apologizes, answers any questions, and discusses "how the Gospel can inform our responses to others who violate biblical standards."
Gayle Haggard, and her husband, Ted, live in Colorado Springs.Why I Stayed: The Choices I Made in My Darkest Hour (2010) ISBN 978-1-4143-3586-5 (with Angela Elwell Hunt)
From This Day Forward: Making Your Vows Last a Lifetime (2006) ISBN 1-4000-7255-7—(with Ted Haggard)
A Life Embraced A Hopeful Guide for the Pastor's Wife (2004) ISBN 1-4000-7062-7
Free to Soar (contributing author) (2005) ISBN 978-0-8307-3790-1
Leading Women to the Heart of God (contributing author) (2002) ISBN 978-0-8024-4920-7
Courageous Grace: Following the Way of Christ (2013) ISBN 978-1414-36500-8