Crossroads Christian Communications president and founder David Mainse will be among the speakers when the 1998 National Pro-life Conference takes place July 2-4 in the Hamilton suburb of Ancaster.

Mainse, who will speak on opening night, is being brought in to provide “a spiritual angle” to the pro-life battle, said Jim Arsenault, a co-ordinating committee member. “While he’s not recognized as a pro-life leader, he’s been involved in major (pro-life) projects in the past. Crossroads supports the pro-life movement when we have something for them to support.”

Arsenault noted that Mainse was a prime mover and helper in the pro-life television special Feel the Heartbeat, which aired several years ago.

Mainse’s television ministry last year announced a change in orientation toward a greater emphasis on social and moral issues – including abortion – during a “Take a Stand” campaign. Since then, the ministry has reported on a number of social and moral concerns, and was present on at least one occasion to broadcast the arrest of Linda Gibbons during one of her many demonstrations outside
Toronto abortion clinics.

Crossroads made the move toward Take a Stand during a week-long guest appearance on its flagship 100 Huntley Street television program by Ben Kinchlow, a former right hand man to well-known U.S. pro-life supporter and Christian Broadcasting Network founder Pat Robertson.

At one point during the week, Mainse collapsed in grief on air as Kinchlow described the partial-birth abortion technique to him.

Mainse was ordained as a Pentecostal minister in the late 1950s and began a weekly Christian television program in Deep River, Ont. in 1962. The program expanded rapidly to many parts of Canada and by 1970, Mainse resigned from work as a pastor to concentrate on television evangelism.

In 1977, Mainse launched 100 Huntley Street (the street address of his Toronto studio), Canada’s first daily Christian television program. In 1992, Crossroads built its own communications facility in Burlington, Ont., from where it broadcasts programming across Canada and the U.S.

Mainse joins a list of other speakers at the conference, including Senator Anne Cools, and MPs Tom Wappel, Jason Kenny and Elsie Wayne. Workshop leaders, meanwhile, will examine topics such as:
· How to lobby MPs
· Pro-life legislation and how to achieve it
· New medical technology
· Pro-life communication

The conference will be held on the grounds of Redeemer College, a scenic 78-acre expanse just outside of Hamilton. Accommodations will be available at the college, and at nearby hotels. A meal package is also available.

On the lighter side, a bus trip will take in a visit to Niagara Falls, as well as stops at a greenhouse and a butterfly conservatory. A closing banquet and barbeque supper with entertainment will also be held.

The theme of this year’s conference is The Canadian Quilt: A Life Pattern. The theme takes in the pro-life quilt project, which will invite participants to make patches remembering unborn children lost through abortion.

The quilts made from the patches are due to be donated to relief organizations or other causes that will be able to use them.

For more information, contact Hamilton Right to Life at (905) 528-3065.