What's the Purpose of our Lives?

We're so glad you're part of our community

Church of the Holdy City

Dialogue, Community, and Spiritual Growth

We look forward to answering your questions, sharing stories

and finding ways to build community

Service Time

Sunday Evening


Join Us Online


What's the Purpose of our Lives?

Last Week

Thanks to all of you who joined us for our discussion on how to deal with evil.

While we tend to think of combating evil in the world, the biggest challenge is to deal with the evil within ourselves. The beginning of all spiritual practice is self-awareness and getting to see our own evil.

If you missed it, you can watch it here.

This Week

Three weeks ago in our discussion group, the question was raised about the meaning and purpose of our lives. I'll be preaching this week about whether there is a meaning to life and how that fits in with our own life purpose.

If you've ever wondered about your meaning and purpose, please join us Sunday.

Virtual Coffee Hour

We tried virtual coffee hour and it worked well. The one really great point was made that some of our newer members never met current members.

They suggested that rather than talk about the sermon, we might just use an ice breaker question during this time of connection just to get to know each other.

We'll try this week. We are committed to making the online presence as deep and meaningful a community as we can, so keep these great ideas coming!

I hope you’ll give a virtual coffee hour a try. If you don’t need it, someone else probably does.

Have a topic you'd like to hear a sermon on just let me know.

I look forward to seeing you Sunday,

See you Sunday,

Rev. Rich Tafel

DC Prepares for our Third Big Snow this Week

Sunday Service Order


Light a Candle

Open the Word

Take a Deep Breath


Loving God, thank you that you promise us that where two or three are gathered you are there in the midst. Lord, we welcome You amongst us today and celebrate the gift of life that you have given to each of us.


Open our ears so that we may hear your voice.

Open our minds so that we may receive Your eternal wisdom.

Open our spirits so that we may know Your leading and guidance.

And open our hearts so that we may receive Your wonderful love. Amen.




O God, you made us in your own image.

Look with compassion on the whole human family.

take away the arrogance and hatred which infect our hearts.

break down the walls that separate us.

unite us in bonds of love.

and work through our struggle and confusion to accomplish your purposes on earth; that we love one another.



Matthew 5:13-16 ESV

“You are the salt of the earth, but if salt has lost its taste, how shall its saltiness be restored? It is no longer good for anything except to be thrown out and trampled under people's feet. “You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.

Swedenborg Insight

An excerpt from Secrets of Heaven by Emanuel Swedenborg, section #1317

The Lord regards nothing in us but our goal. No matter what thoughts we have thought or deeds we have done in all their countless permutations, as long as our purpose is good, these things are all good. When our purpose is bad, on the other hand, those things are all bad. Our final goal is what prevails in every single thing we think or do.

The angels with us are the Lord’s, and therefore what they govern inside us are our purposes. When they govern these, they also govern our thoughts and deeds, because all our thoughts and deeds are included in our purposes.

Whatever we aim at is our actual life. The aim brings everything we think and do to life, since it embraces everything we think or do. So the nature of our goal determines what our life is like.

A goal, or purpose, is nothing but love because the only thing we can adopt as a purpose is something we love. Even those who think one way and act another still have something they love as their goal. Within the pretense or deceit itself lies the goal, which is self-love or materialism, and this is the joy of their life.

Accordingly, as anyone can see, the nature of our life reflects the nature of our love.



Last week we challenged our members and friends to surpass our goal of $2400 in monthly online pledges. You came through and this week we've achieved $2,969.58. If anyone is inspired to give $31/m we'll be at an even $3000/m in online donations. Thanks to all of you for your generosity.


(Lord's Prayer using sins/sin)


Spirit in Action

Monday Night Event

Join us Monday night for the first in a four-part series on civic engagement.

Get zoom info here:



Our denomination is partnering with the Friends Committee to provide a five-part course on how average citizens can engage their government effectively. The final session on May 23rd will be facilitated by Annabel Park and myself at Church of the Holy City on successful strategies we've used to engage policy leaders.

Community Building and Outreach Meeting Held

Last Tuesday we held our first Community Building and Outreach meeting.

The group is being facilitated by Kateryna Pyatybratova and Bethany Quinn. Annabel, Tony, Niki, Shalonda, and Rich attended.

The group laid out plans to describe our church story and efforts to share this message with the world. If you'd like to be part of this group, let the pastor know.


How to order COVID-19 Test Kits beginning January 17 ·

Access the test kit ordering form hosted by the White House from the NACHW site to begin placing orders: https://nachw.org/covidtests/ ·

One package of four COVID-19 rapid test kits.

If you have a problem getting them, the church will work with you to get yours.

1611 16th Street NW, Washington DC 20009