About Me

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I have discovered that walking a very narrow path leads to broad places of peace, contentment, and provision. I work as a freelance consultant in the areas of cultural heritage, public history and museums, From 2009-2016, I was the executive director of the Bolduc House Museum in Ste. Genevieve, Missouri, (now called New France - the OTHER Colonial America, an eighteenth century French colonial historic site and National Historic Landmark.) My PhD is from the University of Leicester's (United Kingdom) Department of Museum Studies. My research looked at the interpretation of diversity at the American Historic House Museum. I also developed and facilitate an inspirational program for Christian grandparents, Gathering Grandparents.

Friday, March 13, 2009

New Cover for The Pastor's Ex-Wife

Thanks to a suggestion by Mumu on Authonomy.com, I redesigned a working cover for the book. Here it is. What do you think?

Friday, February 20, 2009

Pastor's Ex-Wife gets comments from online readers

The complete manuscript of Pastor's Ex-Wife, by Lesley Barker, is posted online at www.authonomy.com. Anyone can read it there - if you want to post a comment on that site you have to create a free profile. If you want to post a comment or a question here, just go right ahead. My goal is to start a conversation about authentic faith and dysfunctional marriages. It is to confront an issue that the Protestant church has as much of a problem with as its Catholic cousin - clergy who abuse their positions and their flock - here, their wives. While some readers find the story too heavy, others find it filled with humor. Here is a sampling of what some readers are saying about it:

One reader found it amusing and true to church life:
"Church with a little wry humor? Can life get any better than that?...Lesley, you've got a great sense of humor and know the inner-workings of the church!"

One reader identified too much to keep reading:
"I think this book could generate some powerful conversations, and perhaps even help some people. Please excuse me for not reading any further-- at least for now. I have some old demons locked away, and I banished them by writing an autobio a few years ago, just to purge them from my system and let me move forward with my "second chance" in a healthier way. As tightly as I think I've closed that door, however, it only takes something like your story to push it open again."

One reader thanked me for telling Her story:
How can I thank you for writing this book? As a 17+ year, abused wife of a world-known, well-respected minister, I'd felt as if I, and others like me have been 'in the closet'. I hope Christians and Church Leaders alike will recognize the relevance and validity of your book. It had me bouncing between laughter and tears! Mostly, it amazed me because I felt as if you were telling my own personal story!! Please know that there are many of 'us' out here, and we all thank you for bringing our plight out into the open. God Bless You!!!

Since what I really want to do is start a conversation, I hope this smattering of responses helps lure new readers to take a peek. Thanks - in advance. ~ Lesley

Friday, January 02, 2009

Clergy Sexual Abuse - the Protestant Side

My biggest goal in writing Pastor's Ex-Wife, the fictional account of Terry Soldan who for 24 years was the wife of an abusive pastor until she escaped by having an affair- not exactly..., was to confront the issue. I wanted to engage a conversation about and among women who have wrestled with issues of faith and authenticity because one lens (their abusive pastor husbands) through which they view God has returned a very distorted image. Now, I am hoping to engage enough readers to interest a publisher. You can help by going to www.authonomy.com. Create a free profile. Then search for Pastor's Ex-Wife by Lesley Barker. Click on View the book. Then BACK the book. Read as much or as little of it as you'd like. Leave comments- be critical and honest about how you find the story. Then pass the link on to others who would be interested. This issue is too big and too important to leave unchronicled. Thanks.