Reviewer: Angelyn Ray, MSW
March 1, 2016
Once a generation, if we’re lucky, a prophet arises among us who will relentlessly call us out on our insane abuses of the innocent and vulnerable, and who will also enlighten a path for those among us who are ready to surrender our ignorance and complacency. For us, this prophet is Kevin Annett. There are others, thankfully, but none I know of whose call is as searching and clarion as his.
In Unrelenting, Kevin Annett moves us along seamlessly from his own roots, to their flowering in his eviction not only from the church ministry but also from life as he knew it, to the international movement he has stirred. Naming his passionate detractors and attracting wounded witnesses and a few survivors of the genocidal Canadian holocaust, he airs children’s buttons and bones, charred and buried in dirt, entangled in the roots of trees planted to cover the crimes. He bares the horrors hidden underneath the robes that swagger within the courts, churches and palaces.
Kevin Annett details the long trail of progress through truth-gathering and truth-telling to strategic action, when he spearheaded the creation of the International Common Law Court of Justice (ICLCJ). Public summonses were issued, not to the usual scapegoats, but to the usurpers of royal thrones and to the papacy itself. No guns, no bombs, just the power of the truth ferreted out, fearlessly told, and finally administered by common law. The world knows about the pope’s resignation; now the inside story is told.
The paradox of enlightenment is that the greater the beam the greater the darkness that is exposed, and the darkness revealed in Unrelenting is of such a depth that, even while cheering the toppling of the usurpers of power and decrying the murders of the little ones, we would gladly look the other way, returning to our preoccupation with our own births and deaths and all that goes between.
We can conspire to kill the messenger, lash out in resistance, avert our eyes, or just stand in awe. Or we can take in the stark revelations and allow them to permeate our reality and influence the ways in which we proceed. How we cross that Rubicon and where we alight on the opposite shore will differ for each of us, with the caveat: there is no return. Such is the effect ofUnrelenting upon the sincere reader. Yet, the author does not leave us in the furnaces or the hells he has exposed; there is a path home.
Few authors can present their own narrative with as much coherence and flow, born of relentless honesty and unfaltering focus. Time and what the rest of us do will reveal the ongoing effects of what is past; and whether what is done as recorded in Unrelenting remains the most important story in memory, or the beginning of a global healing that is long overdue.
- Angelyn Ray
Kevin conducting readings from Unrelenting:
“Unrelenting” can be ordered through Amazon.com or at