Candle lighting ceremonies provide a ceremonial focus for many different types of events. They are often included in weddings, baptisms, bar/bat mitzvahs, birthdays and memorial services to honour loved ones. Speeches that accompany a candle lighting should evoke a tone that is appropriate to the event. Make your speech your own by including anecdotes or sentiments that honour the occasion and your relationship to the person or people you are celebrating.
Think deeply about the meaning of the occasion and your relationship with the guest of honour, and write down the first thoughts that come into your head about the person. What traits does that person have that you admire? Do you have any particular memories of that person that jump to mind? Use a funny story about that person to lighten the mood. Start with the reason for the ceremony and arrange your thoughts around the milestone.
An apt quotation can serve as a platform for your speech. Choose a quote from a meaningful work or person that embodies one of the sentiments you came up with in your brainstorming session. Pick a quote that puts your feelings into words.
Draw an outline of your speech with bubbles. In each bubble write a thought, quote or story idea and connect the bubbles that seem related or like they would work nicely in succession. Once you have filled a page or two with ideas, go back through and pick the most appropriate, interesting or funny bubbles to form the main points of your speech.
Keep your candle lighting ceremony speech short. Short speeches allow you to express your ideas and thoughts succinctly without losing the rapped attention of your audience. Brevity is especially important for a birthday candle-lighting, since you will be limited by the burn length of the candles. Use longer candles to give yourself more time.
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