Borrego Sun - Since 1949

Borrego Ministers Association Now A 501c3


Last updated 3/5/2024 at 12:40pm

Remembering the evolution of the Borrego Ministers Association (BMA), it grew from a small network of clergy and laity trying to coordinate assistance to neighbors in need into more encompassing community presence.

During the pandemic, concerned Borregans turned to the BMA to manage the sudden increase in local emergency financial needs. The BMA was established over a decade ago as a coordinated effort to consider aid requests, offer relief, and find appropriate help for distressed local families.

Some of you may remember the original founders:

• Rev. Laura Brecht, St. Barnabas Episcopal Church – Chairman of BMA. Retired, enjoying family.

• Rev. Jim Brooking, Methodist Church – the original concept came from him. Deceased.

• Rev. Dr. George Abrams – Very early member & still active

• Mike Himmerich, Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints – Treasurer for many years, Deceased.

• Frank Himmerich, Lay leader Lutheran Church. Deceased.

• President Geoff Barton, Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, Borrego Springs Branch – Secretary for many years, now treasurer.

• Fr. Nemisio Sungcad, St. Richard’s Catholic Church – transferred to other assignments.

Originally, donations were gathered under the Methodist Church charitable status but managed in a separate BMA bank account.

Today, BMA continues actively under the leadership of Fr. Michael Plekon, St. Barnabas, Co-Chairman, Pastor Mateo Mamea, Community Methodist, Co-Chairman, Joyce Merrick, Secretary, President Geoff Barton, Latter Day Saints, Treasurer. In addition, other BMA members meet on Zoom weekly to consider emergency requests. And, of course, we can only assist families because of our many loyal donors, who continue to entrust their charitable gifts into our hands.

In 2024, we are happy to announce that the BMA has applied for 501(c)(3) status under the Internal Revenue Code, and has been granted the EIN number 92-3678192 as a publicly listed charitable organization. This means that donors can continue to deduct their BMA gifts and that the BMA will now file audited annual reports of our finances to the IRS and the records will be public. We have always met accepted accounting practices, thanks to our founders’ care and vision, and now we can accept gifts from endowments, bequests, and philanthropies that require 501(c)(3) practice and status.

We hope that this new 501 (c) (3) status will encourage many of you to consider adding the Borrego Ministers Association to your list of annual contributions. You will find donor details at There you can also find links to stories about the scale of our past work for families in Borrego Springs. Your gifts are vital.

We urge you to remember the work of the BMA in your estate planning. We do not receive corporate support, your donations sustain our work. Many thanks to the Borrego community for your generous support.