GRACE EPISCIPAL CHURCH’S new rector, Rev. Dr. Ted J. Gaiser.

GRACE EPISCIPAL CHURCH’S new rector, Rev. Dr. Ted J. Gaiser.


Grace Episcopal Church on Washington Street in Bath invites the community to join in welcoming its new rector, Rev. Dr. Ted J. Gaiser.

Gaiser has served three churches in the Diocese of Massachusetts, worked with diocesan staff supporting the development of parish-based global mission programs and provided financial and development consulting to churches. Like many clergy, Gaiser’s call to ordained ministry was circuitous but persistent, as has been his life in the church. He has been a college instructor, management consultant, online researcher and entrepreneur. His professional experience spans academic administration, technology management, health care, and research.

Gaiser recently returned from serving as an Episcopal missionary in Colombia where he served on diocesan staff as the director of mission development with a focus on sustainable economic development and served two churches, one in English, which he started, and another in Spanish. He has traveled extensively throughout North, Central and South America and Europe, has been an invited speaker in various locations around the globe and participated in, or co-led, several youth and adult mission delegations to the Caribbean, Central and South America, East Africa, as well as Israel and the Palestinian territories. Gaiser has lived in Paraguay, Bolivia and Colombia.

Gaiser has served on many nonprofit boards, cooked in soup kitchens and was a chaplain in an inner-city senior housing development and a prison for youth offenders. For six years he served on the board of the Global Episcopal Mission Network, a network of mission leaders throughout the Episcopal Church. He currently serves as president of Colforpaz, a foundation he established to support the mission efforts of the Episcopal Church in Colombia.

Although Gaiser has spent a number of years abroad, he thinks of himself as a New Englander. He only recently relocated from Bogota, Colombia to Maine — previously having lived in Boston for 27 years. He’s not new to Maine. Gaiser’s maternal grandparents lived in Southwest Harbor on Mount Desert Island, where he spent his summers as a child picking blueberries on Cadillac Mountain and digging clams on the shores of Bar Harbor.

He also lived in Bath on Court St. in the late 1960s when his father worked at Bath Iron Works. He still recalls having a paper route that ran along High Street and attending Saturday matinees at the local theatre. His family owned a one-room camp in East Orland where they spent vacations during his youth.

Gaiser’s family includes fishermen, a Swan’s Island Ferry boat captain, names like Staples and Gott, and roots that go back to the days when Maine was a part of the Massachusetts Bay Colony. He still has a number of relatives living in Maine.

Gaiser has lived on the coasts of Massachusetts and Connecticut, in the White Mountains of New Hampshire, and in the Green Mountains of Vermont. When he was young, his family camped regularly at Seawall in Acadia National Park, in the Moosehead Lake region and in Baxter State Park. His hiking pursuits have included Mt. Katahdin, Mt. Washington, and the White Mountains. In his youth he was an avid ski racer, skiing most of the challenging courses in Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont. He also enjoyed a good many fishing adventures, including ice fishing around the state.

Gaiser holds a degree in history and religious studies from Southern Connecticut State University, a seminary degree from Boston University School of Theology, and an MBA/PhD from Boston College.

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