A Simple Candle Lighting Ceremony

My friend Lynne shared this Candle Lighting Ceremony with me quite a few years ago.  It is written by Nancy M. Moeller, L.S.W., C.A.D.C, 1993 ©.  It is a simple and beautiful ceremony that I hope you will consider adding to your holiday gatherings.

During the holidays, it is often difficult to find ways to include your loved one in celebrations. A beautiful way to accomplish this may be to create a new tradition by using four candles in a centerpiece - advent wreaths work perfectly - and as you light the candles, read the following words:

As we light these four candles in your honor, we light one for our sadness, one for our memories, one for our determination, and one for our love.

We light this candle for our sadness. The pain of losing you is intense, and the grief we feel is often hard to handle. We want you to know that we miss you so much.

We light this candle for our memories. There is so much we remember - your smile, your laugh - the good times and the bad ones, too - when we were angry and when we were happy - all those times that never could have been lived with anyone but you. We want you to know that we will always remember.

We light this candle for our determination. Knowing you has brought us strength. We are changed because of you. Your life has made a difference in our lives. We want you to know that we will take the energy of your living to help us move forward in our own lives.

We light this candle for our love. The specialness that we shared with you can never be replaced. During this holiday season, our love for you will shine as brightly as this candle. We will pass that love on to others, and as we do, our hearts will smile because of you. We want you to know that we will always love you.


And remember to "Say Their Name" as you gather with family and friends this Holiday Season.  Click here for suggestions. 

My book Permission to Mourn: A New Way to Grief is available at amazon. It makes the perfect holiday gift for everyone on your list who is learning to live with the death of someone they love.
You can find it by clicking: Tom's Book.

If my NEW WAY of "doing grief" resonates with you, I'd love to work with you one-on-one. If you are in the Rockford, Illinois area we can do that in person, otherwise, I am having great success coaching people all over the world via Skype, FaceTime or Facebook Chat. Email me at tomzuba@aol.com if you would like to take the next step on your grief journey. We can discuss details and schedule a coaching session.

Follow me on Twitter @ TomZuba, on Pinterest, and visit my YouTube channel.


  • UnDGVu bslxhgsvpiuz, [url=http://ghjsuecrzoyb.com/]ghjsuecrzoyb[/url], [link=http://dpmcsqnmoads.com/]dpmcsqnmoads[/link], http://qccelowzbepb.com/

  • Good

  • I love this candle idea Tom. Thank you. Years ago when the kids were little we used to do an advent wreath with four candles. I am going to turn it into Katie’s Candle Ceremony. I m sure she’ll like it. Happy Thanksgiving, much gratitude and abundant blessings to you Sean, Erin, Trici and Rory.

    marypat correro
  • Tom, This is a perfect idea! I used it years ago at my TCF Christmas Memorial. It tends to bring everyone there, even a little closer to each other. Thanks for all you do Tom. I am sure you have helped many many people out there who are just beside themselves not knowing what to do to manage thing through the holidays. Now 23 years in my grief journey, I still use some of these same activities. It is even more special when extended family is there to share. Hearing other people say my son’s name is very soothing now. I hope every one has a special day today. I’m thankful for my family and people like you, Tom, who take the time to be so helpful for others. Thanks for being there!

    Carol Soos
  • I like this idea. One candle is to acknowledge our sadness, which is viscerally real. But the following three are all to acknowledge the positive of having our loved one in our lives.


Leave a comment

Name .
Message .