Robert C Gates

Robert C Gates


Robert C. (R. C.) Gates was born November 1892 in Renova, Pennsylvania to William and Gertrude (Rhoads) Gates. He graduated from Dickinson College in 1915 and married his wife, Mildred Colcord. The Gates came to Southern Rhodesia in 1922 as part of the Methodist Episcopal Church’s Rhodesia Mission Conference. He was ordained a deacon in 1923.

During his first ten years of missionary service in Southern Rhodesia, Reverend Gates was at Old Umtali Mission serving as pastor, superintendent, and Principal of the Hartzell Training School. In the following years, he served as superintendent of the Nyadiri Mission, and Mrewa Mission, Umtali-Rusape and Marange Districts. He was also the mission and Conference Treasurer and pastor of St. Andrews Church in Umtali (Mutare). Mrs. Gates supervised women’s work in the various districts in which they were stationed.

After forty-one years of missionary service, the Gates retired in 1963 and returned to Pennsylvania where Rev. Gates was granted an honorary Doctor of Divinity by Dickson College. He died in October 1964. His wife, Mildred, died in April 1970.


  • Mark Loomis