Joseph F. Lamb Council was named in honor of the past supreme secretary who passed away around the time Council 5510 was being formed. Mr. Lamb’s name was suggested and adopted by a vote of the forming committee. The Council was instituted on March 1, 1964 under the direction of Former District Deputy Walter F. Coss, in Oak Ridge, NJ. It is New Jersey’s One Hundred and sixty-third Council. On April 19, 1964, the Council petitioned The Paterson Federation of Knights of Columbus” for admission to the Federation and was subsequently accepted.
In the relatively short period of 50 years, the devoted brothers of the “Joe Lamb” have achieved an enviable record in the Order as well as in the Community and the State.
Within the Order of the Knights of Columbus, they have received the coveted “Star Council Award” 16 times. This is the highest award a Council can achieve. It is given for attaining excellence in membership, insurance and all Council activity programs. Council No.5510 has been cited by the Supreme Council and the NJ State Council for their achievements in membership and insurance by several awards such as the John F. Kennedy Memorial Award and the Diamond Jubilee Award. The official monthly bulletin, “The Newsletter”, was judged, twice, best in its class by the NJ State Council. The numerous trophies, scrolls and plaques presented to the Council and once adorning the walls of our Council Chambers are evidence of the hard work and dedication of the Brothers of the Council.
When the expansion program of St. Thomas was planned, many members of the Council combined their professional talents to assist with this major undertaking. A Past Grand Knight organized and served as chairman of the Fund Raising Committee and many Knights worked at the project from 9 round breaking to surveying, painting and laying the tile floors. The dedication included a week long schedule of activities, which was highlighted by the largest patriotic and ecumenical demonstration ever witnessed in this area.
Council No.5510 has the singular distinction of being the designer and creator of a new flag. The flag has red letters, which spell out “ONE NATION UNDER GOD”. The letters are on a white outline of the United States sewn onto a blue background with the Knights of Columbus emblem in the lower right hand corner. The flag is trimmed with gold fringe. This symbol of patriotism, attractively assembled by talented ladies of the Council, has been proudly carried in all parades and is displayed at all proper functions.
Joseph F. Lamb Council has championed the causes of the underprivileged in such programs as “Operation Thundercloud” for the American Indians, summer vacations in Oak Ridge for the Inner City youth and relief to flood and disaster victims from Biafra to Mississippi to Pennsylvania as well as right here in the Milton/Oak Ridge area.
Annually, fund raising events are held in order to serve and help those in need. Some of the more memorable events have been the Annual Dinner Dance, the Clam Bakes and three years working with the Community Fire Company at the Newfoundland Fair. Also, the continuous Mission project, card parties, square dances, tricky tray parties, family picnics, camping trips, children’s Christmas and Halloween parties, the annual Lunch with Santa, Easter Egg Hunts, Banjo Sing Along and numerous fund raising activities. In recent years we hosted musical dinner shows in conjunction with the talented Jefferson Community Players.
The creed of the Knights of Columbus is Charity, Unity, Fraternity and Patriotism; the greatest of these being Charity. Webster has the definition of a “Knight” as “a champion of a cause”. Our cause is Charity and Brotherly Love under the banner of One Nation Under God.
When the Franciscan Friars General Assembly of the 4th Degree was instituted, Ten Brothers from the Council became Charter Members. Two of our members have served as the Faithful Navigator of this Assembly. Several Brothers from 5510 have brought further acclaim to the Council by their advancement in the Order. Our former Chaplain became the Friar of the 3rd NJ District 4th Degree. He was also Chaplain of the Paterson Diocesan degree team. The Council has been honored by having six Past Grand Knights appointed as District Deputies.
Several Officer positions in the Paterson Federation of the K of C have been held by Brothers of the Joseph F. lamb including two who have held the position as Chairman of the Federation. Two Past Grand Knights also served on the committee to organize and prepare the By-laws for the Federation. Another Past Grand Knight served on the committee when a major revision of the by-laws was undertaken. Still another Past Grand Knight was elected as the first “permanent” Comptroller for the Federation. The Paterson Federation is an organization of Councils comprising over 8,000 members from Passaic, Morris and Sussex Counties. One of our Past Grand Knights was the Chairman of the Diocesan Degree Team and later served as the NJ State Ceremonial Chairman. Another Past Grand Knight has served as the Church Activities Director for the NJ State Council and again served the State Council as the Family Activities Director. Numerous Brothers have been selected and have served on many State Committees.
Among the Civic achievements of the Council, the Jefferson Township Council has passed resolutions citing Joseph F. lamb for its outstanding contributions to the Community. Annually, food baskets are distributed to the needy of the area and our blood bank has served many in the time of need. Over seventy-five different functions have been held for the benefit of the youth in the area. One such effort was “The Action Committee”, a group co-sponsored by the K of C and the Berkshire Square Club. When there was no local theater, a weekly movie was presented for the children. Other functions include the annual sponsorship of athletic events, swimming classes, Judo & Karate exhibitions, essay and art contests and drug abuse programs. For several years, the Council sponsored Troop 49 of the Boy Scouts as well as supporting local Girl Scout Troops and Cub Packs.
In 1968, 1969 and 1970 the Council sponsored the Joseph F. Lamb invitational 2 mile run at the K of C track meet held at Madison Square Garden, New York. The Council has served as a leader in the Right to Life Movement, the One Nation Under God Campaign and a spearhead in the North Jersey Committee for Decent Literature which was organized by one of our Past Grand Knights who later served the organization as President.
Recent years the Council has sponsored a 5K Run/Walk with all the proceeds of the events going to Department of Persons with Disabilities, (DPD).
Often, a Brother Knight serves as Santa and visits the local Hospitals distributing gifts and good cheer to the unfortunate. Our Lunch with Santa program has become a popular annual event, which brings cheer and good will to many young and old alike, in our local community.
Council No.5510 has never forgotten our servicemen and veterans. They have participated in numerous programs for gifts to be sent overseas and to the V.A. Hospitals including routine visits to assist the veterans at getting to Mass on Sunday. They proudly joined the line of marchers in New York City in May 1967 in support of our servicemen. This parade was cited as the second largest ever to take place in New York City. In October 1967, they were leaders in the organization, which sponsored the parade in Newark, New Jersey, and are always ready to champion the cause of Patriotism. Most recently, through the State Council, messages were sent to members, sons and daughters serving in the “Desert Storm” Operation. Members of our Council were also involved with the inauguration of bringing coffee, donuts and bagels to the veterans at Lyons V.A. Hospital so they could enjoy some refreshments after the Sunday Mass. The notion was soon picked up by other councils so the veterans have something to look forward to every Sunday throughout the year. The coffee pots were purchased and donated by the Paterson Federation.
In 1978 the Council undertook a commitment to help the mentally retarded. They joined the national effort and annually held a successful drive to help a local facility, Wiegand Farm, operated by the Diocese of Paterson for the developmentally disabled. They have done whatever has been asked of them by the directors. Parties and entertainment for the residents is supplied by the Council for all special occasions. In return, the Council and all Knights have been honored by having two of the principle resident buildings named “Finnegan House” and “Columbus House”. One of our Brother Knights serves as the Director of all nine homes currently operated by the Diocese. Our commitment to this effort has extended to our families with many assisting as volunteers in the homes and instructors in special CCD classes tailored for these individuals.
Monetarily, we have raised over $45,000 for the facility in addition to the contributions made annually by the State Council. Also, through the efforts of one of our members and supported by the State Council, a large walk-in refrigeration unit was purchased and installed enabling more economic purchase of food supplies for the residents.
In 1981, the Council was again honored by having a Past Grand Knight represent the State Council as a delegate to the 99th Supreme Convention held in Louisville, KY
The spirit of Columbianism continues to foster within the Community wherever and whenever there is need. In support of the Jefferson Arts Committee, the Council underwrote and managed the sale of tee shirts to benefit the Liberty Days celebration in Jefferson. In conjunction with the Bicentennial celebration of Columbus’ discovery of the New World, the Council was asked and provided a magnificent float depicting this historical event, which was the focal point of the local parade and day-long display. Again our Council was the focus of attention as we paid tribute and acknowledged the honors that our local High School band received in the New York City St. Patrick’s Day Parade. When the desire to construct an exceptional playground for the children of the community surfaced, one of our members served as chairman for the project and many members assisted with the actual construction.
For many years our Council maintained an abundant “pantry” which was administered in cooperation with the local welfare authorities. With the appearance of “Food Kitchens” and nutrition sites, our efforts and food drives have been redirected to support these facilities.
Supporting the Special Olympics programs has been still another area which has attracted many volunteers from our Council. Together with supporting the annual Torch Run, sponsored by police departments throughout the State, our members have assisted as cooks, servers, greeters, huggers or wherever their help was needed.
As visual evidence of the Knights of Columbus Pro-Life stance, our Council began giving Precious Life Medallions to all infants baptized at St. Thomas the Apostle Church. The program ran from January 1990 through December 1996 providing almost 400 of these medallions, each engraved with the child’s name and date of birth. Proceeds from our “famous” Palm Sunday Cakes Sales, initially funded this project.
Twice we have provided the “congregation” for the Mass for Shut-Ins, making the pilgrimage to the TV Studio for the taping. Both times, the Mass was broadcast on Easter Sunday, once on Easter 1991 and again on Easter 1993.
When it comes to sports, our Knights are not shy. The Council Softball Team or “Heroes of the Diamond” (as they like to be called) has issued challenges to surrounding Councils who would dare to test the competition. Thus, the spirit of Fraternalism extends even beyond the walls of our Council Hall.
In recent years we have moved our home to Weigand Farms. With a new location has come new ideas for helping others in need. Our Baby Bottle program has been proven very successful. Our Council sponsored a “Baby Bottle – We Support Life Drive” with the proceeds going to Birth Haven. Birth Haven is an independent, non-sectarian, non-profit organization that provides shelter, support, and education for homeless, pregnant women and girls. The agency provides a safe and nurturing environment in which to carry an unexpected pregnancy to term, while additionally helping the resident learn the tools necessary to achieve greater self-sufficiency. Individuals served by the organization include both those who intend to raise their child after delivery and those who opt for adoption placement. Our continued support for Right to Life.
In 2016 the Council had a very good year with many community activities. The Council held four (4) Blood Drives during the year helping the Red Cross.
The JTHS Band Parent Association and the Council 5510 have teamed up together to proudly display the musical talents of the “Jefferson Township Wind Ensemble” conducted by Richard Barrieres with proceeds going to help fund student scholarships.
The Council ran a Dinner with Sinatra dinner show with 230 guests. Show was performed by Jonni Drue as Frank Sinatra impersonator. Council continued working at the Jefferson Days celebration selling hot dogs and this year running the Dunk Tank.
Our Council was honored to have Sir Mike Murphy, PGK and his wife Kathy as St Thomas the Apostle’s Parish recipients of this year’s Vivere Christus Award Winners.
As 2017 marked the 100th anniversary of Dean Martin’s birth, what better way to celebrate than having a tribute show dedicated to the live music Martin made famous. Dave DeLuca an accomplished singer, songwriter, musician, and recording engineer performed Dino’s greatest hits.
The Knights and the JTHS Band Parent Association have once again teamed up in 2018 to display the musical talents of the “Jefferson Township Wind Ensemble” conducted by Richard Barrieres with proceeds going to help fund student scholarships.
GRAND KNIGHT HISTORY
“IN SERVICE TO ONE, IN SERVICE TO ALL”
|Thomas Ubriaco III
|Scott P. Milliken
|Louis X. Schnackenberg
|George T. Verile
|James E. Zajde
|Paul E. Koontz
|H. Robert Simpson
|Charles A. Crawford
|Joseph A. Corbo
|Joseph P. Glenn
|George C. Dick
|Enrico A. Caggiano
|Michael K. Murphy
|Joseph L. LorellO
|PGK, FDD +
|William H. Meyer
|Louis X. Schnackenberg
|George C. Dick
|John V. Bergantino
|I. Joseph Floridia
|Louis X. Schnackenberg
|Philip M. Leavitt
|PGK, FDD +
|Lawrence C. Martini
|Charles J. Gossner
|John H. Flaherty
|Joseph C. Babcock
|Gabriel C. Roberto