The Emerson Avenger

The Emerson Avenger is a "memory hole" free blog where censorship is scorned. This blog will "guard the right to know" about any injustices and abuses that corrupt Unitarian Universalism. Posters may speak and argue freely, according to conscience, about any injustices and abuses, or indeed hypocrisy, that they may know about so that the Avenger, in the form of justice and redress, may come surely and swiftly. . . "Slowly, slowly the Avenger comes, but comes surely." - Ralph Waldo Emerson

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Location: Montreal, Quebec, Canada

In 1992 I underwent a profound revelatory experience of God which revealed that the total solar eclipse "Eye of God" is a "Sign in the Heavens" that symbolizes God's divine omniscience. You may read about what Rev. Ray Drennan of the Unitarian Church of Montreal contemptuously dismissed as my "psychotic experience" here: - This revelatory religious experience inspired me to propose an inter-religious celebration of Creation that would take place whenever a total solar eclipse took place over our planet. You may read about what Rev. Ray Drennan and other leading members of the Unitarian Church of Montreal falsely and maliciously labeled as a "cult" here: - I am now an excommunicated Unitarian whose "alternative spiritual practice" includes publicly exposing and denouncing Unitarian*Universalist injustices, abuses, and hypocrisy. The Emerson Avenger blog will serve that purpose for me and hopefully others will share their concerns here. Dee Miller's term DIM Thinking is used frequently and appropriately on this blog. You may read more about what DIM Thinking is here -

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

The Unitarian Church Of Montreal And The Truth About Wilhelmina Tiemersma

Well this is quite interesting. . .

As a result of running a Google search on "Unitarian Church of Montreal" for the post below I discovered that UU World editor Chris Walton has added an Editor's note to one of the very few comments of mine that he has seen fit to allow to remain on his Philocrites blog. Interestingly enough it looks like his editor's note was only added yesterday so this discovery is quite fortuitous.

Haven't I said before that Google is on my side? ;-)

I will respond point-by-point to Chris Walton's editor's note below -

:[Editor's note: I have been in communication with Wilhelmina Tiemersma and with the Rev. Charles Eddis, who served as minister of the Unitarian church in Montreal during Tiemersma's ten years as the church's organist.

The question arises here as to just why UU World editor Chris Walton has been in communication with both Wilhelmina Tiemersma and Rev. Charles Eddis about the act of arson that Wilhelmina Tiemersma committed in 1987. Was it just for the purposes of his editor's note or is Chris planning to do a story about the razing to the ground of the Unitarian Church of Montreal by Wilhelmina on May 25, 1987 in an upcoming issue of the UU World magazine aka U*U propaganda organ?

:They have convinced me that Robin Edgar is willfully misrepresenting her as part of his own unrelated grievance against the Montreal church.

So just how have Wilhelmina Tiemersma and Rev. Charles Eddis convinced UU World editor Chris Walton that I am *willfully* misrepresenting Wilhelmina Tiemersma? It is one thing to misrepresent someone but quite another to do so knowingly and willfully. I can assure Chris Walton, Rev. Charles Eddis, and other "like-minded" suspicious-minded Unitarian*Universalist U*Us, to say nothing of Wilhelmina Tiermersma herself, that I am not knowingly and/or *willfully* misrepresenting Wilhelmina in anything that I have written about her on the internet. In fact I was not aware that I was misrepresenting her at all. I hereby invite Chris Walton, Rev. Charles Eddis, and even Wilhelmina Tiermersma herself, to tell everyone just how I am allegedly "willfully misrepresenting" Wilhelmina by posting their responses to this post in the comments section below.

:Wilhelmina Tiemersma was convicted of setting the fire that destroyed the church building and she served a prison sentence for criminal negligence causing death.

It bears noting that, according to Montreal journalist Kristian Gravenor's Coolopolis blog, Wilhelmina Tiemersma was initially charged with second degree murder for causing the death of two firemen who died as a result of her act of arson when the "east" wall of the Unitarian Church of Montreal collapsed on their firetruck as they were fighting the fire, as may be seen in this overhead newspaper photograph of the Unitarian Church of Montreal on fire.

:She and Eddis attribute the arson in part to a mental illness and a strong reaction to the prescription drug she had been given as part of her treatment.

Well I don't dispute that mental illness, and a possible strong reaction to a prescription drug that she had been given as part of her treatment, may indeed be "in part" a reason for Wilhelmina Tiermersma's act of arson, but what about the rest of the story Chris? What were the various other motivating factors that caused Wilhelmina Tiermersma to open the gas valves and set fire to sheet music over 150 years old, thus setting a fire in the Unitarian Church of Montreal that she knew endangered the lives of the caretaker of the Unitarian Church of Montreal, Ruben Pradier, and his family?

Come on Chris. You are a "journalist" aren't you?

Haven't you heard the saying, "The public has a right to know. . ."?!

Oh, I forgot. . .

In reality Chris Walton is little more than a hired propagandist for the Unitarian*Universalist "religious community" aka the U*U World and it simply is "not within the mandate" of the UU World magazine to truthfully and accurately report newsworthy stories that just might prove to be just a tad embarrassing to Unitarian*Universalists U*U World-wide.

I guess we can just forget about Chris Walton trying to obtain court transcripts from Wilhelmina Tiermersma's trial, or interviewing various other people who knew Wilhelmina at the time of the fire, in a free and responsible search for the full truth and meaning behind why it is that she decided to set fire to the Unitarian Church of Montreal.

:They strongly reject Edgar's suggestion that she has expressed no regrets. Eddis told me that Tiemersma "feels guilty to this day, especially about the deaths of the two firemen."

That may be so, however my suggestion that Wilhelmina Tiermersma was quite unrepentant about her act arson, and had expressed no regrets for it, was based on a seemingly reliable report that I had read about Wilhelmina Tiermersma on the internet or in a local newspaper. There was absolutely no "willful misrepresentation" whatsoever involved in my making that assertion. My representation that Wilhelmina Tiermersma was totally unrepentant for her act of arson was based on an apparently reliable report from a seemingly credible source of information. I have done some follow-up search online and have not found the source of that report. As I recall it was a print media report published a few years ago. Wilhelmina might want to share her concerns with the author of that print media story about her. I only passed on statements or feelings that were attributed to her in that report, which may well be true in any case. . .

:Tiemersma wrote to me: "My life is dedicated to repairing, as far as I am able, the damage I caused all those years ago."

Well I see very little evidence that might support that rather questionable assertion by Wilhelmina Tiemersma. Perhaps UU World editor Chris Walton can dig a little deeper and ask Wilhelmina exactly what she has done in her life since the arson that is clearly dedicated to repairing, as far as she is able, the damage that she caused all those years ago. . . Just what has Wilhelmina done towards repairing the damage that she is responsible for Chris? Can Rev. Charles Eddis can fill us in on that perhaps?

:Shortly after her release from prison in 1991, Tiemersma offered an organ recital in another Montreal church at the beginning of the penitential season of Lent. They have recently been interviewed for a documentary film about the fire; I'll post a link to more information about the film as it becomes available. It's worth noting that Eddis has remained in touch and on friendly terms with the organist who was convicted of burning down his church; that certainly doesn't line up with Robin Edgar's version of the story. —Chris Walton, 10.22.2007]

My version of the story is based on information found in Montreal newspapers, and/or apparently reliable internet sources, as well as some "hearsay evidence" shared with me by various people that I remain reasonably wary of, but none-the-less have to consider may well be very truthful and reliable. I was quite unaware that Rev. Charles Eddis has remained in touch with, to say nothing of "on friendly terms with", Wilhelmina Tiermersma. There is certainly a story to be told there if that is true. The documentary film should prove to be quite interesting.

I can't help but take note of the fact that the interviews with Wilhelmina Tiemersma and Rev. Charles Eddis for this documentary film have been done recently. Who is to say that Wilhelmina Tiermersma has not changed her tune a bit recently in light of this documentary film? After all she would not look all that good if she appeared to be totally unrepentant and without regrets for her act of arson in a documentary film would she? It is entirely possible that the earlier reports that Wilhelmina Tiermersma was unrepentant, and had no regrets for her act of arson that cost the lives of two Montreal firemen and completely razed the Unitarian Church of Montreal to the ground in May of 1987, were entirely truthful and reliable at the time that they were written and published which was some years ago.

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The Unitarian Church of Montreal Engages In False Advertising. . .

Rev. Priscilla Richter just made a blog post titled What’s In A Name? Data on UU nomenclature on her Seeking Sophia blog. In it she erroneously states that the Unitarian Church of Montreal, apparently once known as the Church of the Canadian Church, is "still legally named The Church of the Messiah." This is no longer true. The alleged Unitarian Church that is commonly known as the Unitarian Church of Montreal voted to change its legal name from The Church of the Messiah to The Unitarian Church of Montreal as it is commonly known. Here is a comment that I posted to Rev. Richter's blog bringing that fact to her attention. It provides some background to that comparatively recent change in the legal name of the Unitarian Church of Montreal and makes some points about "What’s In A Name?" that I have made previously here and there on the internet but have not to my recollection devoted a TEA blog post to -

The Unitarian Church of Montreal is no longer legally known as The Church of the Messiah. The congregation voted to change the legal name to The Unitarian Church of Montreal some months ago. The name change began as an attempt by Rev. Ray Drennan and other atheist "Humanist" Montreal Unitarians to get rid of the word "church" in the legal name and no doubt the common name of this alleged "church". In fact there were one or two congregational votes to change the legal name of The Church of the Messiah to the Unitarian Congregation of Montreal or the Unitarian Community of Montreal (or some similar terminology) in the last several years but they failed to achieve the two-thirds vote necessary to change the legal name of this "church".

In his missionary zeal to ensure that the word "church" was eradicated from the legal name of the Unitarian Church of Montreal Rev. Ray Drennan once announced in the "church" newsletter prior to one of the previous congregational votes that it was "false advertising" to continue to call the Unitarian Church of Montreal aka Church of the Messiah a "church". In a follow-up letter to the editor of the NUUS UCM member Kenneth Howard QC rightly pointed out that it was equally false advertising to call the Unitarian Church of Montreal "Unitarian" considering that the word Unitarian implies belief in one God. As far as I am concerned both of these atheist "Humanist" Montreal Unitarians were quite right and it was, and still is. . . highly misleading, if not outright false and fraudulent, "advertising" to call the Unitarian Church of Montreal a "church" or even "Unitarian".

I should add that calling itself a Unitarian "church" is by no means the only false advertising that the Unitarian Church of Montreal engages in and that much of its other "advertising" can be shown to be highly misleading, outright false, and even quite fraudulent in that Montreal Unitarians make various claims about themselves that they should know are not true.

Friday, October 19, 2007

A Public Witness Specializing In U*U Injustices, Abuses And Hypocrisy Since 1998. . .

I just noticed that the UUA's Office of Information and Public Witness has a position open for a Public Witness Specialist. So I just sent an email to UUA Public Relations Director Janet Hayes, and her Public Information Assistant Erika Nonken, presenting my credentials as a rather special kind of Public Witness Specialist for the U*U religious community. I suppose that I should have mentioned that I have almost a decade's worth of experience as a Public Witness Specialist specializing in publicly witnessing to U*U injustices, abuses and hypocrisy. . . ;-)

Date: Fri, 19 Oct 2007 10:40:29 -0400 (EDT)

From: "Robin Edgar"

Subject: Is The U*U Public Witness Specialist Position Still Open?


If so please allow me to present my credentials -

Allah prochaine,

The Emerson Avenger

Update 4:20om Friday October 19, 2007


Well, like a number of other things on the official UUA web site, the information was out of date and the position for a U*U Public Witness Specialist is no longer open.

How do I know U*Us ask?

I received an official response to my inquiry about the position from UUA Public Relations Director Janet Hayes herself. . . ;-)

Within half an hour of sending the email reproduced in the post I received the following response from Janet Hayes -

Dear Robin Edgar –

Unfortunately, we have filled this position.

Thank you for your interest in working for the UUA, and best wishes in your job search.


Janet Hayes

Public Relations Director

Unitarian Universalist Association

25 Beacon Street

Boston, MA 02108


Since Janet Hayes was kind enough to very promptly respond to The Emerson Avenger's inquiry about the position of Public Witness Specialist for the UUA, I felt that I should respond to her email. Herewith is The Emerson Avenger's response that was sent to Ms. Hayes -

Date: Fri, 19 Oct 2007 11:58:49 -0400 (EDT)

From: "Robin Edgar"

Subject: RE: Is The U*U Public Witness Specialist Position Still Open?

To: "Janet Hayes"

Dear Janet Hayes,

Thank you for your very prompt response to my inquiry about the position that the UUA announced that it had open for a Public Witness Specialist. I am glad to hear that you were unfortunately able to fill the position, although I am not quite sure why you consider it to be "unfortunate" that the position was filled. May I suggest that you take the time to update those UUA web pages which still indicate that the position is open? I dare say that the UUA might do well to consider hiring a Web Site Updating Specialist considering the out-dated information that is found on the UUA web site.

Thank you for your best wishes in my job search but the fact of the matter is that I am already a special kind of self-appointed volunteer Public Witness Specialist for the Unitarian*Universalist religious community, and have been acting in that capacity for close to a decade now. A free and responsible search for the truth and meaning of that assertion, by following the links to the various web pages that serve as examples of my solid credentials as a self-appointed Public Witness Specialist for the U*U World, should make that very clear to you. I really quite enjoy serving as a volunteer Public Witness Specialist when it comes to U*U injustices, abuses and hypocrisy.


Robin Edgar

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Yet Another Unitarian*Universalist U*U In The Media. . .

Who has been hit with a three-month suspended sentence for disorderly conduct and an apparently well deserved year-long restraining order thanks to what U*Us would call her disruptive behaviour. . .

"Truly a unique and inappropriate situation," says Beth Bacha, a vice president for Comcast. She says company policy forbids disclosure of clients' records, but did say their files note that the service record wasn't exactly what Shaw has indicated. Besides, "nothing justifies this sort of dangerous behavior."

So just who are the "sub-moronic imbeciles" in this Washington Post story anyway?

Saturday, October 06, 2007

Rev. Kenn Hurto On Graceless And Rude Unitarian*Universalist U*Us. . .

Thankfully I can't be "defellowshipped" from the MFC for "plagiarizing" verbatim the following words of U*U minister Rev. Kenn Hurto* -

Dear Companions in Faith,

It feels inelegant, but I say often, “Our congregations get plenty of guest/visitor traffic. The problem is our flypaper doesn’t seem to have enough stickum.” I believe a reason most of our congregations do not grow has little to do with whether people find us — although we do a quite good job of hiding ourselves from our fellow seekers.

No, the problem has to do what happens after they arrive. Far too often, we are simply graceless or rude when it comes to hospitality. Guests come in the door and revolve right back out, untouched by our faith and rejected by our people.

I’ve been in many a congregation where even a perfunctory good morning from a greeter was absent. Once, I wandered around the social hall after a service for a ~ hour and not a soul said, “hello.” I left vowing never to return. I’ve been embarrassed to be asked to stand up in a service, in front of dozens of people, to introduce myself to people who failed to introduce themselves to me. Even as an expected guest speaker, I am often ignored by congregants chatting away in meeting house hallways. The message: “Go away, you’re not wanted here.”

Has this happened to you?

What must it be like for the shy, or the “I’m not sure I belong here” seeker coming the very first time? Or for a person whose appearance is other than white and middle-class? Or for the sincerely interested who return for several Sundays to be barely acknowledged? Perhaps it’s not a matter of enough “stickum.” Could it be that we’re afraid of strangers? Or: that we’ve turned our congregation into a private club for the already included?

Fall is the time when congregations gear up, so to speak. A “new” year has excitement and good intention. So, let me again urge you to try to remember how it is to be a guest at a party where you don’t know anyone, or how it felt to you to go to your first Unitarian Universalist congregation. Then ask yourself: “How do I want our guests to feel when they walk through our doors? What am I doing to open that door and my heart to this stranger? Can I, we do a better job of being hospitable?”

People who come to us are in spiritual transition, even in crisis in some way. It is an act of ministry to ensure they are lovingly received, acknowledged, and welcomed. Shame on us that we so often fail to serve.

Read the rest of Rev. Kenn Hurto's "rant" about U*U Unwelcoming Congregations here.

* aka Reverend Kenneth Hurto

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Is The UUA National Marketing Campaign A Death Rattle?

That is the question. . .

That David Dent, author of “Alex Webster and the Gods” and researcher of developments and trends in religion and society, has just asked on his blog.

Here are his exact words -

Earlier this month, the Unitarian Universalist Association announced the launch of its first nationwide advertising campaign in fifty years. Ads in Time magazine and on its website,, are scheduled to begin in early October with the goal of raising awareness of Unitarian Universalism “as a viable religious option,” said UUA President William G. Sinkford. Is it a death rattle or a new beginning?

And here is the terse response that I just submitted to David Dent's somewhat impertinent pertinent question about the life expectancy of Unitarian*Universalism aka U*Uism -

In that the UUA national marketing campaign is almost certainly due to the fact fact that the Unitarian Universalist Association finally got around to facing the fact that Unitarian*Universalism aka U*Uism has had pretty much stagnant membership figures since the UUA was formed in 1961 and is thus actually steadily losing ground as a percentage of the overall population. As far as I am concerned the UUA is putting the marketing cart before the welcoming horse. I expect that a good number of those people who are illusioned into visiting, and possibly even joining, U*U "churches" aka U*U "Welcoming Congregations" will inevitably become disillusioned with a "church" where God believing people, to say nothing of God Herself. . . are not particularly welcome.

More detailed responses to the UUA's national marketing campaign may be read in the following blog posts or blog comments -

Some UUA National Marketing Campaign Talk For President Bill Sinkford and Gini Courter To Answer To. . .

First national Unitarian Universalist media campaign comment on Rev. Dr. Daniel O'Connell's blog

Unitarian Universalists On The Right Track comment on Let's get things back into perspective here! blog

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Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Could It Be. . .

So here`s the question. . .

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Monday, October 01, 2007

Totalitarian Unitarians Are Keeping Me From Going To The Unitarian Church Of Montreal. . .

Well it looks like Deborah Weiner, Director of the Unitarian Universalist Association's Office Of Electronic Communications, aka The Ministry Of TRU*UTH. . . set up a U*UTube account at about a week ago. Apparently this is an attempt by Ms. Weiner to market Unitarian*Universalism aka U*Uism to the whole wide real world using U*U produced "viral videos" etc. So far the only video that Debbie Weiner has posted to her U*UTube account is the rather amateurish video that Bay Area Unitarian*Universalists produced to propagandize and proselytize U*Uism in San Francisco and the Bay Area.

As I have already stated elsewhere on the internet the "parting shot" advertising slogan of that U*U marketing video says,

"Don`t let someone else`s idea of God keep you from going to church. Discover Unitarian*Universalism"

by saying - OK so the parting shot of this ad says -

"Don`t let someone else`s idea of God keep you from going to church. Discover Unitarian*Universalism"

So what happens when newcomers visit Unitarian*Universalist "churches" only to discover that there is precious little God in them and that someone else`s idea of God, i.e. an atheist U*U minister`s idea of God. . . is that God is "a non-existent being" and that belief in God "seems primitive" etc.? What happens when God believing people show up at Unitarian*Universalist "Welcoming Congregations" only to discover that they are not particularly welcome there?

It should be noted that the, even more cheapo and amateurish, graphic for that rather lame Bay Area U*U marketing campaign video asks,


and furthermore, it bears noting that UUA administrator Deborah Weiner aka Deb Weiner aka Debbie Weiner has seen fit in her infallible and unquestionable UUA wisdom to use that very same question as the title for the U*UTube version of that U*U marketing campaign video.

Here is the comment that I posted to YouTube in response to that question -

Actually Totalitarian Unitarians are keeping me from going to the Unitarian Church of Montreal. Heck, outrageously hypocritical Montreal Unitarian U*Us are even trying to obtain a restraining order that would undermine my Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms guaranteed freedom, and indeed right. . . to peaceful public protest against U*U injustices, abuses and hypocrisy.
Somehow, knowing full well Deborah Weiner's ignomious past track record of censoring and suppressing my own, and no doubt other people's. . . criticism and dissent in UUA sponsored Electronic Communications such as UUA email lists, I do not expect to see that "moderated" comment posted below the U*UTube video in question.

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