OUR MISSION: To Share the love of Christ
is within the Episcopal Diocese of San Diego which includes 50
churches in San Diego County, Imperial County, southern portions
of Riverside County in California, and Yuma, Arizona. It is
located in the small desert town of Borrego Springs, California,
surrounded by the beautiful Anza-Borrego Desert State Park. The
beauty of our desert creates an atmosphere of quiet and
The church is a beautiful California mission style building
with a parish hall, rectors office, court yard and labyrinth.
There is also a rectory. Both buildings are fully paid for and
the church is debt-free with a fund for capital expenditures and
a small endowment fund.
The congregation is made up of approximately 100 members.
Winter attendance is around 50, dropping to about 35 in the
summer months when many snowbirds head north. Most of its
members are retired though some of the younger members work in
the community. Growing our church is one of our challenges. As
older members leave the community there is a need to attract new
and younger members.
There is one service at 9:30am
every Sunday. We use primarily Rite II of
the Book of Common Prayer as well as seasonal sacramental
Services are supported by lectors, chalice bearers, greeters,
and our altar guild who also handle the flowers.
Special services include Lessons and Carols at Christmas,
Easter Vigil and traditional services during Holy Week. There is
also a community Easter Sunrise Service.
Fellowship follows each Sunday service with refreshments
provided by parishioners. This is an opportunity for all to
socialize and extend hospitality to visitors.
This has included bible study, lectionary preparation, and
book and film discussions.
Pastoral Care: Eucharist is provided to those who
cannot be present at Sunday worship due to illness or infirmity.
Hospice trained volunteers also assist.
- We fund a yearly camper at St. Stephen's summer camp in
- We support Beautify Borrego, an effort to keep our desert
Our members are active community volunteers as school tutors,
at the Chamber of Commerce, as state park docents, members of
various boards and Rotary and other service organizations.
We support many activities through a twice yearly bake event
and a Talents and Treasure event once a year.
Parish facilities are available for community use and at this
time Alanon, a cancer support group and hospice training meet
there as well as the healthful support group Younger Next
Music for worship is provided on the church’s Allen
Renaissance organ and occasionally includes parishioner
musicians on the trumpet, piano and violin. There is a small
choir, averaging 8 to 10 members each Sunday. It is not a
performance choir, but a supportive choir for the congregation’s
participation in our liturgical music which is essentially
traditional. Both the organist and the choir director are volunteer
The Carillon is our monthly publication for members and
friends via e-mail or mailings. It informs parishioners of
church activities and schedules, plus reports on the vestry and
various committees. It usually has pictures of recent
activities, a poem and a small want ad column. Our website is our internet connection with the rest of the
THE NOW AND
FUTURE ST. BARNABAS
What are the
greatest opportunities awaiting St. Barnabas and how will the
church come to embrace those in the next five years?
questions asked of the Parish when the work of designing a
profile was first initiated. The responses reflected the “can
do” spirit of a congregation which began meeting in a private
home in the not so distant past.
By far the
strongest hope which emerged in those discussions was the need
for a leader who will help grow the church both in numbers and
in diversity. Activism in the community and a deliberate effort
to reach the unchurched of Borrego Springs will be an important
component of that goal.
As noted in our
description of the town, there are many organizations in need of
volunteers and St Barnabas; parishioners are in the forefront of
serving such needs.
One dream that
has been extant since the founding of the Parish is the
establishment of a Retreat Center on the campus of St.
Barnabas. Since the closing of St. Paul’s Monastery in Palm
Desert several years ago there has been a great need for a place
where groups and individuals can go to experience renewal,
meditation, and the beautiful peace of the desert. As was once
so widely said, “Everyone needs time in the desert every once in
What will St.
Barnabas be in the next five years or, in other words, 2014?
the consensus of today’s congregation, St. Barnabas will be a
strong, Christ-centered force in the community of Borrego
Springs with a cohesive group of strong lay leaders led and
trained by a Rector who leads by Christian example.
He/She will be
dedicated to building up an inclusive congregation by reaching
out to our Hispanic population, who make up half the population
of Borrego, and to area youth, many of who are also unchurched.
will continue to build on her record of social action, adhering
always to Christ’s directive to “Love one another and feed the
foundation of the St. Barnabas of the future will continue to be
based in Love: Love for one another and Love for the stranger
at the door, no longer a stranger once he/she passes through the
portals of St. Barnabas Episcopal Church, Borrego Springs,
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