SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WTVO) — Thousands of anti-abortion protestors from all across the state took to the streets of Springfield on Tuesday for the “Illinois March for Life.”

They started with a prayer service led by Bishop Thomas Paprocki, of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Springfield, at the University of Illinois Springfield. He and others are pushing for Illinois to change its law protecting abortion access.

Abortion rights advocates held a counter protest. They want to keep those rights protected.

“Anytime there’s a change in government, whether it’s within the legislature or within the governor’s office, our rights can be rolled back,” said activist Heather Dykes. “The people who are trying to take our rights away are not going to stop.”

“We hope to change minds and hearts,” Paprocki countered. “Not only people throughout the state, but most importantly our government officials to be respectful of human life from the moment of conception.”

Anti-abortion advocates also called on lawmakers to oppose a bill that allows the attorney general to investigate certain pregnancy centers accused of misleading or interfering with a person seeking abortion care.