The Australian Christian Lobby has expressed deep disappointment with Rugby Australia over plans to sack Israel Folau just for stating his beliefs.

We continue to stand with Israel Folau and support his right to express his beliefs,” said ACL’s managing director, Martyn Iles.  

Far from being homophobic, Israel Folau’s social media post was very inclusive – drunks, homosexuals, adulterers, liars, fornicators, thieves, atheists, and idolaters – is a list which includes everyone, affirming the Christian teaching that all are equal in our need of salvation. 

“Rugby Australia’s actions amount to gross discrimination against mainstream Christian beliefs, which are shared by millions of Australians who will no doubt feel marginalised by the sporting body.” 

In April last year, we raised concerns that Rugby Australia could in the future stifle Folau’s freedom to speak openly about his faith and marginalise his Christian identity. Today, we have seen this concern come to fruition.”  

“It is a sad day for freedom of speech. A mature democracy should critique, not censor controversial opinions.” 

“This is also a sad day for professional sport, which has long championed the principle of good sportsmanship, regardless of athletes’ personal differences.” 

The Australian Christian Lobby is urging Australians who support freedom of belief to call Rugby Australia and express their disappointment in this decision.