Ceremonies: Eternal Flame Ceremony

2012
03.23

Ceremonies using candles can be traced back to the beginning of Girl Scouting. This ceremony can be used by girls or adults at Service Unit meetings to pass on the “fire” of Girl Scouting. This ceremony is appropriate for older Girl Scouts (Junior and older).

 

Juliette (Daisy) Gordon Low’s Candle Ceremony – V. 1

Attributed to Lori Roach aka “Ladybug” Totem Council- GSUSA

Equipment needed:

Candle for each girl
Matches/lighter
Water bucket (with water in it)

 

 

Leader #1: Long ago, a special ceremony was formed. Juliette Low wanted her original girls to carry a special spark with them as their Scouting group broke up. Some from the troop were moving away, working to help their families, or wanted to help a group of girls a little younger than themselves. But whatever their reasons, Juliette knew no other group would ever be quite the same.

Leader #2: As the girls stood in a circle holding candles (they had made), Juliette knew what spark it was she wanted to pass on. She lit her candle & spoke.

Leader #1: “With this candle, I give you each something very special to pass on. As I light the candle on my right, I ask each of you to light the candle to your right & pass it on. I want you to carry this thought with you wherever you go. This is the ETERNAL FLAME for Girl Scouts. Each of you, after having a lit candle before you, will repeat the Girl Scout Promise with me, then pause & recall a few of the things we have done together as a group. I will hold my candle up, and as I do so, you will all raise yours and we will blow them out together. Before we separate from our circle, I want to ask you to keep this candle as a very special candle. It is not to be used for any purpose but passing on the ETERNAL FLAME. You may use it in other Girl Scout ceremonies, such as camps, encampments, campfires, bridging or court of awards ceremonies. I’m glad we were able to start a special tradition based on our ETERNAL FLAME.

Juliette (Daisy) Gordon Low’s Candle Ceremony – V-2

Leader #1: “This candle is very special. I lit your candle using a candle I have. My candle was lit for me at a candle lighting ceremony (when) by (who lit it & who lit hers…..trace to Daisy, if you know the history of your candle that well.)

Leader #2: Juliette Low told the girls to take their candles home and use them in candle lighting ceremonies – to pass the flame on to others. If you look at your candles, you’ll see the wick is black, and that is what is left of the old flame. When you relight your candle, you are not only sharing the flame of this (camp, troop, etc.), but you are also sharing a bit of every flame that went before it, right back to the one lit by Juliette Low.

Leader #1:  When your candle burns down, be sure to use it to light a new candle. In this way, you will be able to continue the tradition.
In a candle lighting ceremony, we are not only sharing a link to our past, but the light is also a symbol of our hopes and dreams for the future of Girl Scouting.

Leader #2: Just as a tiny flame is passed from person to person, growing brighter & brighter as more candles are lit; it is a Juliette Low’s dream was…that Girl Scouting would be a bright beacon for girls everywhere. May we all keep her dream alive forever.

Leader #1: Passing the Light and the Spirit of Girl Scouting When Juliette Gordon Low established Girl Scouting in 1912, the tradition of candlelight ceremonies was an important part of the various activities. Through the early years, she passed the light and spirit of Girl Scouting on to others through investitures and campfires. They, in turn, continued to pass the light and the spirit. Over the years, the light and spirit of Girl Scouting has taken many different paths. The following is a brief history of one such path. One of the first leaders-in-training was Ethel Cooper, and she like so many others, received the light from Juliette Low. Ethel went on to establish a troop in 1917 in Plymouth, Pennsylvania. Through her years of Girl Scout involvement, she too, passed the light on to her girls with the hope that they would continue to pass the light and keep the spirit of Girl Scouting alive.

Leader #2: Over the years, the light from Ethel’s candle was passed to many others throughout our great organization…at meetings, campouts, and at investiture and rededication ceremonies—just like this one. And on {date}, {ceremony-leader’s-name} passed the light on to the members of Troop(###)….

Leader #1: May we always remember the spirit in which Juliette began this organization to spread to all girls the confidence, determination, courage, and knowledge that they can do anything. May we develop that same spirit within ourselves and the girls we lead. In the spirit of Girl Scouting, let your lights shine!

 

You can change this ceremony to fit your needs. I also attached a tag to each candle that said: “You are the flame that passes Girl Scouting onto others, as Girl Scouts have done for more than 100 years. Pass it on!” This way the girls/adults will always know that this is an Eternal Flame candle.

Ask around in your service unit if they have an Eternal Flame candle. Ask them to perform the ceremony in your service unit and then you can pass the flame onto your troop! If you can’t find an Eternal Flame candle in your area, contact me at: GSLakeMom@gmail.com with your mailing information and I will send you a candle.

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