How to Perform a Bar Mitzvah Candle-Lighting Ceremony

One of the most important aspects of a bar mitzvah is celebrating with family and friends. A bar mitzvah candle-lighting ceremony is a wonderful way for the bar mitzvah boy to recognize and honor the important people in his life.

Design the Structure of the Ceremony

Decide on the number of candles you would like to light. Traditionally, 13 or 14 candles, one for each year of the bar mitzvah boy's life, are lit. Some people add an extra candle for good luck.

Select the people you're going to invite to light a candle. Close family members and friends are generally chosen. Some people also light a special candle in memory of deceased relatives, for those who couldn't attend the bar mitzvah or for out-of-town guests who made a special trip.

Choose the order in which you will call people. The typical order is: grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins, older relatives, younger relatives, family friends, the child's friends, siblings, parents and the bar mitzvah boy himself.

Choose the music for the ceremony. You can have either a song played for every candle or a few different songs that represent certain themes.

Consider making a donation for each candle lit, in honor of the person lighting the candle.

Write a Poem for the Ceremony

Think about how you would like to write the poem. Rhyming is a popular option.

Break the poem up into segments, each featuring a few lines about the special people who will be lighting candles. Alternatively, you could write a longer poem to be read at the beginning of the ceremony, mentioning each special person or group.

Include important and funny details about each person included in the ceremony.

Consider hiring a professional speech writer. Provide him or her with pertinent information about each family member and allow him or her to capture your descriptions in a well-written poem.

Perform the Ceremony Smoothly

Beat stress and nerves by reading the poem from a printed sheet instead of memory.

Rehearse the poem a few times to make sure you perform it smoothly on the day of the event.

Stand up straight, speak clearly and perform from the heart, allowing your guests to get the true feeling behind the ceremony.