Rev. Victoria Hart Gaskell
Rev. Gaskell’s favorite professional activity is the creation of safe space that encourages people to ask questions about the life of faith, explore the answers, and decide which answers are their own. She brings her enthusiasm for questions to her work at the Chapel, and to the retreats, workshops, and classes she leads in area churches and at Rolling Ridge Retreat and Conference Center in Andover, MA. Her own current questions and explorations are in the areas of conflict transformation, money in the life of faith, the nature and work of the Holy Spirit, the theology of John Wesley, the practice of devotional chant, and the practice of silence.
Rev. Gaskell began her work as Chapel Associate on January 1, 2007. The focus of her position is invitation and outreach to United Methodist and Methodist students on the Boston University campus, with a yearly high point a trip to the United Methodist Student Forum.
Herself a lifelong United Methodist, Rev. Gaskell is an elder in the New England Conference of the United Methodist Church. Born and raised in Michigan, she grew up in the Detroit Conference. Her current charge conference is Old West Church, United Methodist, in Boston.
She received her B.A. in Russian Language and Literature and her M.A. in English Language and Literature from the University of Michigan. Her M.Div. is from Harvard University. As a hospital chaplain, Rev. Gaskell has served in “acute, chronic, and terminal care” settings and in a mental health facility, and as a pastor her ministry has been as an interim with congregations who have experienced a traumatic breach with the former pastor. As a Th.D. candidate in Theology and Ethics at Boston University School of Theology, her research interests include pneumatology, conflict transformation, and Wesleyan studies.
She is a member of the Order of St. Luke, a dispersed order begun in the United Methodist Church and open to all, whose members are dedicated to sacramental and liturgical scholarship, teaching, and practice. As a Dale Carnegie instructor she is certified in the work of effective communications and human relations. She is also trained in circle work and as a circle Keeper.
Rev. Gaskell has sung as a chorus member with the Cambridge Revels and as a member of the Revels touring group Circle of Song. Currently she studies recorder as a member of the Boston Recorder Society. Perennial student, wife, mother, daughter, sister, aunt, and godmother, Rev. Gaskell lives with her family, companion animals, and friends in Boston.