1. He moved to Joplin, Missouri from Quincy, Illinois with his wife, Courtney, where he was the youth pastor at The Crossing for a year and then served as the associate pastor for three years. Prior to that they lived in Joplin while earning degrees from Ozark Christian College. Robert has an associate degree in church music and a bachelor’s degree in Christian ministry, and Courtney graduated with a Bachelor’s of Biblical Justice degree. They’ve been married five years this April.
2. He can play the banjo, and calls himself “aggressively average” at it.
3. He likes to write. It’s his dream to write a book one day, but he likes writing youth ministry curriculum.
4. He loves playing ping-pong. He just started playing last year as a joke because he had a New Year’s resolution to work out in a sport that had the least amount of physical activity. It blossomed into a love for ping-pong. One of the first things he looked up when he moved to Joplin was whether the area had a ping-pong league. (side note: They do!)
5. His family loves playing board games. “Settlers of Catan” is their favorite, and “Zelda: Breath of the Wild” is his favorite video game of all time.
6. He and his wife don’t agree on movies … most of the time. She won’t see anything remotely spooky – especially if it’s dark outside.
7. They have two cats – Hagrid and Luna – and if they get a dog they’re going to name him after a Harry Potter character, too.
8. His favorite worship song of the moment is either “Seasons” by Hillsong, or “Here Again” by Elevation. When it comes to music he likes pretty much every genre … except for Country.
9. He got baptized at a MOVE event in eighth grade, so CIY has always had a place in his heart. “I remember it was in Tennessee and I was the only one to get baptized in a water fountain on the campus,” he said. “I was raised in a Christian home, but it was the first time I realized Jesus was a real person and not some abstract being. When I understood His love as a Father and what that meant, it just clicked and I knew I had to do something. That was a big moment, and I fell in love with the mission. It’s surreal to be working here now. I’m really excited to be a part of it.”