Israel Folau's new fundraising campaign is more than $ 2 million less than 48 hours ago after the Australian Christian Lobby organized its own crowdfunding site.
The former Wallabies star launched a GoFundMe page last week to pay legal fees in an impending fight with Rugby Australia after being fired for a controversial post on social media.
GoFundMe pulled the page down Monday and announced that it would & # 39; promote discrimination or exclusion & # 39; did not tolerate.
ACL responded by setting up its own campaign for Folau and & # 39; religious freedom & # 39 ;, donating $ 100,000.
Israel Folau's new fundraising campaign has gone beyond $ 2 million in less than 48 hours
The former Wallabies star (pictured with his wife Maria) launched a GoFundMe page last week to pay legal fees in an impending fight with Rugby Australia after being fired for a controversial post on social media
The website gathered more than $ 2 million on Wednesday night, more than two thirds of Folau & # 39; s original $ 3 million goal.
Martyn Iles, managing director of ACL, admitted that the response to the fundraiser & # 39; overwhelming & # 39; and they were planning to interrupt donations.
& # 39; We have decided that we should stop at $ 2 million and collect more money if and when we need it, & he said the Australian Wednesday.
& # 39; The enormous scale and pace of donor response has been so overwhelming. & # 39;
The lawyers of Folau and RA meet on Thursday at 9.30 am for a mediation conference, according to the Sydney Morning Herald.
The meeting is unusual as legal representation must be requested for mediation, according to the Fair Work Act.
In an Instagram post on Wednesday, Folau said he & # 39; humiliated & # 39; was by the support after the termination of his RA contract
The Instagram text was attached to an image that reads: "you may not agree with me, but thank you for your support"
The revelation suggests that the parties are preparing for an intense and lengthy fight that could end up in the Federal Court.
Folau is represented by Macpherson Kelley, while RA Herbert Smith saved Freehills from the previous hearing with codes of conduct.
Folau & # 39; s $ 4 million rugby contract was ruined in May after he had a paraphrased Bible text with the following text: & # 39; Drunkards, Homosexuals, Adulterers, Liars, Fornicators, Thieves, Atheists and Idolaters & # 39; would go to hell unless they converted & # 39 ;.
Folau is seeking damages up to $ 10 million and believes that his case could end up in the High Court.
Folau & # 39; s wife Maria (left), who plays netball for the Adelaide Thunderbirds, has not commented on the saga but has reshared the links to Folau & # 39; s campaign
Folau & # 39; s rugby contract of $ 4 million was ruined in May after he had a paraphrased Bible text with the text: & # 39; Drunkards, homosexuals, adulterers, liars, fornicators, thieves, atheists and idolaters & # 39; would go to hell unless they converted & # 39;
In an Instagram post on Wednesday, Folau said he & # 39; humiliated & # 39; was by the support after the termination of his RA contract.
& # 39; To those who have criticized me, I have no bad will toward you. You have every right to express your own beliefs and opinions, & he continued.
& # 39; The decision of GoFundMe to end my campaign proves the importance of my case; whether you share my faith or believe in my right to express it, attempts to sanction what we believe is a threat to all Australians.
& # 39; I am incredibly grateful to the Australian Christian Lobby, who not only came to the defense in the media, but also set up a website to receive donations on my behalf.
& # 39; For those unable to donate, your support and prayers will make more of a difference than anything else. & # 39;
Folau (right) depicted with the Australian Christian Lobby's general manager, Martyn Iles
Folau & # 39; s GoFundMe page raised $ 750,000 before it was deleted. Many people claimed to be angry about the removal and encouraged them to donate more to the second campaign.
Mr Iles told Sunrise that there were 10 donors per minute and that the average amount was just under $ 100.
& # 39; The silent Australians talk with their wallets, & # 39; he said.
The funds donated on the ACL webpage are deposited into a trust account to pay for the Folau case, Iles said.
Folau & # 39; s wife Maria, who plays netball for the Adelaide Thunderbirds, has not commented on the saga, but has re-shared the links to Folau & # 39; s campaign.
She was convicted by the ANZ bank, the largest sponsor of New Zealand's internal netball competition, in support of her husband's faith.
They have issued a public statement stating that the organization does not support Maria's views.
The funds donated on the ACL webpage are deposited into a trust account to pay Folau & # 39; s case, Iles said.
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