Last week, the old office was renovated and I assumed that the space would become offices for biochemistry students. So did my biochemistry colleague whose office is on the other side.
Surprise! The sign went up yesterday. This room is now a religious chapel, or prayer room, with the rather misleading title of "Multi Faith Room." I assume that its purpose is allow people of all faiths to visit the room from time to time (it's open from 7am to 10pm) and pray behind the screen.
The room has not been transferred to biochemistry, it has been assigned to the Faculty of Medicine. A little island of faculty controlled space in the middle of the Department of Biochemistry.
The Dean knows me. She is well aware of the fact that I'm a prominent defender of evolution in the war against creationism. She also knows that I am an atheist who doesn't shy away from the the conflict between science and religion. She probably doesn't know that I'm a strong supporter of the Centre for Inquiry and adviser to the University of Toronto Secular Alliance.
I put posters and banners on the wall outside my door advertising atheist events and I often post articles promoting evolution over creationism and science over religion.1 I'll be putting up even more posters in the near future since the Faculty of Medicine has decided to send me the very people who need to hear my message.
Thanks to the Dean for giving me this opportunity to reach out to the other side.
UPDATE: The Multi Faith Room no longer exists. See Multi Faith Room Disappears!!.
1. I'm looking for more posters. Please let me know if you find something appropriate.