Why you want to know James L. "Jim" Lockwood: The hungry are fed, the sick are cured and families in need get shelter when Jim Lockwood miraculously turns Hot Springs’ trash into cash. Lockwood has held the distinct title of rummage sale chairman for the Knights of Columbus Council 6419 in Hot Springs since 2004. Lockwood is adamant that the success of the program is possible only by the support from the team of volunteers who repair, pick up and sell the donated items. During the past year Lockwood and his team raised more than $60,000 for eight community charities, including the food pantry at St. Mary Church in Hot Springs. The rummage sale is held four weekends each year — two weekends in April and two in October. He and his wife, Martha, are also involved in raising money for diocesan seminarians during the Faith in the Springs dinner. A native of Delight (Pike County), he was raised a Methodist and became interested in Catholicism while in college at Henderson State University. He and his wife, also a convert, were married at St. John the Baptist Church in 1965. He retired as a high school English literature and grammar teacher in LaMarque, Texas, in 1993. After he retired, the Lockwoods returned to Hot Springs.
Parish: St. John the Baptist, Hot Springs
Family: Wife, Martha, married 54 years; four children and 16 grandchildren
Education: bachelor’s degree from Henderson State University and a master’s degree from the University of Arkansas
Occupation: Retired high school English literature and grammar teacher
In his own words
What feeds you spiritually?
I do a lot of reading. I read books about apologetics of the faith. At Easter or Christmas we (members of the Knights of Columbus) purchase books to give (away to each member of the parish). We always come up with something that we hope will bring people back to the faith. Do you know that more than half of the people baptized as Catholics are not in the Church? We hope that these books will touch someone so they will become a Catholic or return to the faith.
Why did you become Catholic?
I like to be where it all started. I believe the Catholic Church is the Church founded by Jesus Christ.
What do you enjoy about St. John Church?
I love the choir. I love the church itself. I love the architecture. I would be sad if they tore it down. Most of the priests I have been fond of. Martha and I were married at St. John Church.
What is key to the success of the rummage sales?
We have some very organized people who come in and work. They will fix things and take things home and clean them. Jim Reiter came up with this idea to build a pole barn (to store items and hold the rummage sale). He went around to the (K of C) members and he got enough money to get it done. It’s called Reiter Hall.
What are the most unusual items donated to the rummage sale?
A man from Malvern let us know he had a coin collection. He had four boxes full of coins that weighed more than 100 pounds. There was a 1909 penny from the Denver Mint that was worth $600-plus. It was worth $6,500 altogether. During the last sale we sold a cabin cruiser.
What are your hobbies?
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