'It had hips and all' - shock at Belfast masonic lodge sex toy raffle prize
A BELFAST Masonic Lodge has been rocked after a guest speaker won a sex toy in a raffle prize.
The embarrassing situation developed after a leading academic - who had been a guest speaker at a lodge dinner - won a mystery raffle prize at the event earlier this year.
It was only when he opened the gift-wrapped prize at his home that he was stunned to discover it was a male sex aid.
Sources claimed the embarrassed academic opened the parcel in front of his shocked wife and daughter the following morning.
The lodge is the Golden Pillar lodge no.156 which meets at a masonic hall on the Crumlin Road, Belfast.
One member has been struck-off following the incident.
A source described the male sex-aid as being "mechanical" and included "hips and all".
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The Provincial Grand Lodge of Antrim has dismissed claims that the lodge has refused to apologise over the incident and that the Grand Lodge had told members not to talk about it.
But the PGL of Antrim confirmed the incident did take place and said the lodge had now banned mystery raffle prizes.
It says "the perpetrator" - the member who donated the gift - has since been struck off.
In a statement to Sunday Life, the Provincial Grand Secretary, the Very Worshipful J Russell Miller said: "The Provincial Grand Lodge of Antrim had no knowledge of this incident until informed by your (Sunday Life's) email.
"Consequently, it would have been impossible for the PGLA to have issued instructions to PGLA members not to discuss the incident.
"The PGLA have never received any complaints from anyone concerning this incident and have robust disciplinary procedures in place for dealing with allegations of unmasonic conduct.
"The hosts immediately apologised to their guest.
"The lodge has subsequently apologised in writing to the guest and also to the two members (who invited the guest).
"The lodge tried to get the perpetrator of the action to apologise, but he has not returned to the lodge and has since been struck off the roll of lodge members for non-payment of dues.
"The lodge have taken action to ensure that there will be no mystery prizes in the future."
A masonic source, who contacted Sunday Life, claimed the incident had caused a row in the lodge.
"We have been told to stay quiet, to do nothing and say nothing and let the hare sit but brethren are furious.
"We are absolutely disgusted at this behaviour.
"Our guest has been nothing but discreet but this shouldn't be brushed under the carpet, we are a fraternal organisation and this sort of conduct could ruin our reputation."
He said the academic had been invited to an Installation Festive Board in February.
During the event a ballot was held with the guest won the mystery prize.
He was urged not to open the box immediately by the member who donated the sex-aid as a secret gift.
Our source told Sunday Life he had spoken to 30 or 40 fellow masons who were "outraged" by the incident.
He added: "Masonry runs in my family and in all my years of membership this is the worst and most abhorrent gift I have seen brought along to any event.
"It should never have happened."
He claimed members were very unhappy over the episode had been handled.