Emily Gage
Rev. Roger Bertschausen

Developmental Senior Minister (he/him)
rbertschausen@unitytemple.org :: x102

Rev. Roger Bertschausen grew up in Grand Rapids, MI. He and his family were active members in Fountain Street Church, a liberal, non-denominational church that had around 2,000 members when Roger was a kid. Roger was president of the youth group and worked as a custodian at the church.

Roger went to Bowdoin College in Brunswick along the coast of Maine. He majored in religion with a concentration in Buddhism and Hinduism. Studying these religions in Sri Lanka for a semester was one of the most formative chapters of his life and eventual ministry.

Roger received a Master of Divinity degree from the University of Chicago Divinity School. He took a couple years off in the middle of divinity school to do a UU internship in the congregation on Nantucket Island in Massachusetts and to get married to Amy Holzhausen, a fellow student at the divinity school, who was serving a Disciples church in Columbus, IN. They lived in Columbus for a year after getting married and then returned to Chicago for Roger to finish his M.Div. and Amy to do a year-long chaplaincy residency at Rush Medical Center. During his year in Columbus, Roger served as the first, quarter-time minister of a small UU congregation and worked full-time as a chaplain at a drug and alcohol treatment center.

After graduating from the University of Chicago Divinity School and being ordained by the UU church in Nantucket, Roger was called to be the first settled minister of the Fox Valley Unitarian Universalist Fellowship in Appleton, Wisconsin. He served there for twenty-five years. During that time, the congregation grew from around a hundred to seven hundred members. The congregation built a new facility and added a 330-seat sanctuary during Roger’s ministry. Roger was extensively involved in the community including helping to co-found Toward Community: Unity in Diversity, an organization committed to diversity, equity, and belonging work. 

In 2014, Amy became the executive director of a counseling center in St. Louis. Roger completed his work in Appleton and followed nine months later. During six years in St. Louis, Roger worked in the President’s office and taught UU history and polity class at Eden Theological Seminary as an adjunct faculty member, was a church governance consultant with Unity Consulting out of Unity Church-Unitarian in St. Paul, Minnesota, and served as executive director of the UU Partner Church Council. 

In 2020, Roger returned to congregational ministry. He did interim ministries at First Unitarian Society in Madison, Wisconsin, and White Bear UU Church in the suburban Twin Cities, Minnesota. He became Unity Temple’s Developmental Senior Minister in August 2023. Roger is recognized as an accredited interim minister by the UU Association.

Roger received an honorary Doctorate of Ministry from Meadville Lombard Theological School in 2021. He has been involved in many ways in the UU Association, the MidAmerica UU Region, and our global Unitarian/Universalist faith.

Roger and Amy have two children who are both government attorneys. Their daughter, her husband (a UU minister), and their two children live in Columbus, IN. Their son and his significant other live in California. Roger loves spending time with family. Other loves include hiking, running, travel, and whiskey collecting. He is a fan of a major league baseball team from an adjoining state to the southwest of Illinois, and is an owner of an NFL team to the north of Illinois.

Emily Gage
Rev. Emily Gage

Associate Minister (she/her)
egage@unitytemple.org :: x103

A life-long Unitarian Universalist, Emily grew up in Pittsburgh, Pa. Within the community of the First Unitarian Universalist Church of Pittsburgh, she cultivated her love for learning about what people believe and why. It was this that sparked her decision to major in religion and minor in sociology/anthropology at Swarthmore College, where she graduated with honors in 1990. Feeling an urge to see—and save—the world, she joined the Peace Corps, and they sent her to Poland, where she taught English as a Foreign Language to high school students from 1991-1993.

Unsure of her next steps in life, Emily returned to Pittsburgh and to the congregation where she grew up. She became the youth advisor, and it was in those months that she realized that she was called to the ministry. It would call upon her many passions and interests in life: learning, making a difference in the world, being part of and cultivating multigenerational community, writing, creating worship, making music, teaching, and listening to people’s lives. She attended Harvard Divinity School in Cambridge, Mass., and as part of her training, served as ministerial intern at First Religious Society (Unitarian Universalist) in Carlisle, Mass. That congregation ordained her to the Unitarian Universalist ministry on June 7, 1997, a few days after she earned her Masters of Divinity degree.

After ordination and graduation, the Universalist Unitarian Church of Joliet, Ill. called Emily to be their minister. She served this community from 1997-2008. During this time, the congregation sold one building, bought and renovated a new one, became a Welcoming Congregation, experienced significant growth, and otherwise served as a liberal religious beacon in the southwest suburbs. Emily was active in the Joliet Ecumenical Clergy Association and served as their president.

She has been at Unity Temple since August of 2008, serving as Minister of Faith Development. Her primary portfolio is to oversee the lifespan religious education programming, though she is called upon to serve in all other ministerial capacities as well.

Emily has been active in the wider Unitarian Universalist world since she was in high school, and attended youth group conferences in her district. She is part of the Chicago Area Liberal Ministers’ group and the Unitarian Universalist Ministers’ Association. She served eight years on the Central Midwest District Board, five of those as president, from 2002-2007. She was a member of the Ministerial Fellowship Committee, the Unitarian Universalist ministerial credentialing committee, serving from 2006-2011. She has served on the Religious Education Credentialing Committee since 2018.

She is married to Karen McMillin and they have a son Paul, born in 2011. In her spare time, Emily enjoys reading, writing, walking the dog, traveling, and listening to and playing music.

mandi huizenga
Rev. Scott Aaseng

Community Minister (he/him)
scottaaseng@gmail.com :: 773 726 9082
UTUUC Affiliated Community Minister and Executive Co-Director, Unitarian Universalist Advocacy Network of Illinois (UUANI)

As Unity Temple’s Community Minister, Rev. Scott Aaseng serves as Executive Co-Director of the Unitarian Universalist Advocacy Network of Illinois (UUANI), our statewide UU justice network strengthening the movement for justice, beloved community and a healthy planet through relational, intersectional, values-based organizing. As a Lutheran pastor on the southwest side of Chicago in the 1990s, he helped found a community-based youth organization, and went on to do multi-state organizing with the American Friends Service Committee. Since finding his UU grounding at Third Unitarian in Chicago, he has served, in various capacities, UU congregations in Quincy, Evanston, Rockford and Springfield IL as well as Hobart IN. He lives in the Austin neighborhood of Chicago.