I’ve been stuck using pine for several months because Evolution has been totally nonfunctional. I’ll try to be level headed here instead of stating what a ‘pleasure’ this time has been and how much I have grown to ‘love’ Evolution for this. Somehow I stuck through it all and even spent time searching for Evolution bugs and comments on occasion, learning more diagnostics and even reading over the Evolution code.
Today, I found where someone who is apparently much smarter than I was provided a dirt simple workaround to my problem. In bug 317518 comment 9, John pointed out that one could symlink to the Inbox from the overridden namespace location in order to finally be able to access one’s Inbox again when using IMAP. Indeed, after ssh’ing to the relevant machine and running the simple
cd mail && ln -s /home/mail/newren INBOX
my INBOX now appears in the midst of all my other saved folders. Not the perfect UI, but hey, at least it works.