Extraordinary Days Require Exceptional Invitations

The Candle Lighting Ceremony – How it Works?

How does the candle lighting ceremony work?

  • To some (including the Doc!) the bar mitzvah candle lighting ceremony is the peak of the BM party. The Doc has sweet memories from her BM candle lighting ceremony. Only the thought of it brings tears to her eyes! And you?
  • 14 candles are lit at the candle lighting ceremony – 13 of the BM and another one for good luck. Sometimes people choose to light more than 14 candles, or only one. “Everything is possible” says the doc!
  • A candle stand is usually supplied by the party hall. Otherwise, a personalized candle stand adds a personal touch to the ceremony. Design the stand according to your simcha’s theme. You can use styrofoam for the base and foam board material for the name piece.

    Bar Mitzvah Poems Book
  • The BM usually leads the ceremony and gives the lighting introductions, in form of a poem or a story. Looking for Bar Mitzvah candle lighting poem tips?
  • For every person or group that comes to light candle, a special song is played. Looking ceremony songs tips?
  • The traditional order for candle-lighting is as follows:
  • People sometimes add a “guest-of-honor” or a “good luck” candle. It’s a sweet addition! Choose someone that has always been there for you, or maybe a person that has an important experience ahead!
  • A tip from the Doc: what is behind your candlelighting ceremony table? Is it an unpleasant plain wall? It will not look very nice then on the pictures! Try to have beautiful balloons or some other pleasant background.
  • Another tip: sometimes people take the ceremony as a sign that the event is coming to an end. Consider having the ceremony ealry in the simcha, when everyone is still fresh and will no way leave.

Fresh ceremony ideas

  • People sometimes complain that the ceremony gets to be the same thing at every BM. Are you looking for a different way to do it? Here are some fresh ideas.
  • Here’s another idea for the ceremony – for every candle make a donation to a charity organization. Connecting the occasion to Israel, by donating to Israeli charity organizations, can add an extra meaning to the ceremony. Honor each of the honorees by announcing the donation that was made in their name. You may also plant a tree in Israel for each of the honorees and hand the certificates.
  • Mike from Florida was looking for something different and yet meaningful for his daughter’s batmi. Their Rabbi suggested that the daughter will light her first candle in honor of the Shabbat. She used this opportunity to explain how Jewish women have been doing it since Sarah and how beautiful a tradition it is. Mike’s daughter still holds the Friday Kiddush every Friday night! Thanks for sharing Mike, your comment touched our hearts!
  • Give a small gift to each of the honorees. Explain why each of them deserves their gift.
  • A “flower planting” ceremony is a fresh idea posted kindly by Susan. Since her daughter’s Bat Mitzvah is “Garden Party” luncheon on Sunday, they didn’t think a candle lighting ceremony would work. Instead, they have put together a silk flower arrangement that each honoree / group of honorees will plant. The arrangement will then be donated to an adult day care center for Alzheimer patients. Beautiful!