About 1,000 abortion protesters rallied in Nash Square in downtown Raleigh on Saturday, then marched with a police escort through the streets to a nearby Catholic church.

The rally has become an annual event for the sponsoring organization, N.C. Right to Life.

Saturday’s gathering was a collection of anti-abortion forces from the group’s chapters, churches, Knights of Columbus and others from across the state. Participants were asked to contribute to a fund to oppose abortions.

“It’s anyone who cares about life and the protection of life,” the organization’s director, Barbara Holt, said after she addressed the crowd.

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