The Rev. Dr. Robert Certain


 “Service before self”

Robert Certain was born in Savannah, Georgia in December 1947. An alumnus of Bethesda-Chevy Chase High School in Maryland, he attended Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia, graduating in 1969 with a BA degree in History and a commission in the US Air Force. As a B-52 navigator he flew 100 missions over Southeast Asia in 1971 and 1972. He was shot down and captured in December 1972; and repatriated when the war ended a few months later.

Following the Vietnam War, he attended the School of Theology, an Episcopal Church seminary in Sewanee, Tennessee, as a postulate and candidate of the Diocese of West Texas. He was ordained as a priest in 1976 after he received his Master of Divinity degree. In 1990, he was awarded his Doctor of Ministry degree from the School of Theology.

During his active ministry continued to serve as a reserve chaplain in the Air Force while he served parishes in West Texas in Kerrville and Harlingen, as well as five other dioceses. He retired from the Air Force in 1999 and from active ministry in 2012 to become the executive director of a national non-profit. In 2017 he and his wife Robbie moved back to Texas to make their home in Blue Skies of Texas West, an Air Force Village community. Since returning to Texas, he has served as interim rector of Grace Church in Cuero, St. John’s in McAllen, St. Andrew’s in Seguin and St. Philip’s in Beeville before coming to the Church of the Messiah in Gonzales.

Robert is married to the former Robbie Wade of Blytheville, Arkansas. They have two grown children and two grandchildren. Their daughter, Mary Vano, is a priest in Arkansas.