The Light of Christmas, a Christmas Ceremony for Advancement

(Tiger Pin, Bobcat Badge, Wolf Badge, Bear Badge, Webelos Badge)
by Edward A. Haluska

People required:

1) Cubmaster

2) Santa Claus


1) Tall candle and a candle holder for it

2) Individual candles with drip guards for each boy

3) Matches to light candle

4) Clear punch bowl

5) Red punch

6) Small paper cups

7) Ladle

8) Dry ice

9) Santa Claus suit


1) Most Cubs gulp down their punch. However, because of the dry ice, an occasional Cub will be convinced you are trying to poison him. Therefore, use small cups and don't even fill them very full.

2) The dry ice that is dumped into the punch should be in one or two large lumps. That way you won't ladle any small chips of dry ice into the cups being used to serve the boys. As a double check, after you have ladled punch into the cup, check to see if it is bubbling with dry ice. If it is, pour it back into the bowl and try again.

3) To find a source of dry ice, look in the yellow pages under "ice." Three pounds of dry ice bought in the afternoon and wrapped in newspaper will be more than enough to last through until an evening pack meeting.

4) If the candle holder for the tall candle will fit in the bottom of the punch bowl and the candle holder can be cleaned well enough, place the tall candle in the middle of the punch bowl for added visual effect.

5) The easiest way to attach the badges to the boys is to have the badge stapled to the small cardboard card it comes with. Make a small slit in the cardboard so that the card may be slipped over the button on the pocket of the shirt. Have some straight pins for backup in case the boy has not yet been able to get a uniform (they are often sold out at the beginning of the year) and is not wearing a shirt that has a button on it.

6) Dim the lighting at the beginning of the ceremony for better atmosphere and so the candles will show up better.

7) This ceremony has a strong Christian content. It is best suited for use with a pack that is uniformly Christian. If your pack has a diverse religious composition, this ceremony may not be appropriate.

Cubmaster:Tonight, during the Christmas Season, we are gathered here as a pack to recognize those cubs among us who have earned a new rank. But as this is the Christmas season, let us begin this ceremony with a reading from a very special book, the book that tells us why Christmas is so important to all Cub Scouts who do their duty to God.

(Read this passage with the majesty it deserves.)

Now there were in the same country shepherds living out in the fields, keeping watch over their flock by night. And behold, an angel of the Lord stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were greatly afraid. Then the angel said to them, "Do not be afraid, for behold, I bring you tiding of great joy which will be to all people. For there is born to you this day in the city of David, a Savior who is Christ the Lord. And this will be the sign to you: You will find a Babe wrapped in swaddling cloths, lying in a manger." And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly hosts praising God and saying "Glory to God in the highest, and on earth, peace, goodwill to men!"

"And on earth, peace, goodwill to men." Words of hope that have come down to us from a wondrous time long ago. Words that still make our hearts echo back love. So in that spirit let us begin. Parents, bring forward these Cub Scouts.

(Cubmaster calls out the names of the all boys who are advancing in rank. Parents and boys come forward and face the rest of the pack.)

Cubmaster:This is the Christmas season. We celebrate Christmas as the birthday of Jesus. As part of our duty to God, to show that Jesus is still the Light of Christmas, we will light this candle.

(Cubmaster lights the tall candle.)

Cubmaster:All the darkness in the world cannot stand against the light of one small candle. Through the power of the Cub Scout Promise, our cubs share the Light of Christmas. Therefore, I want each of you boys to come forward one at a time and light your candle from the Christmas candle.

(If you have boys who will be getting their Tiger pin, ask...)

Cubmaster:Our new boys who want to be Tigers have studied the Tiger promise. Are you boys ready to make that promise now to yourselves, your parents, and the pack?

(Cubmaster shakes head in yes motion. Boys should also shake their heads yes.)

Cubmaster:Then hold your candle in your left hand, make the Cub Scout sign with your right hand, and repeat after me.

I promise to love God,
my family and my country,
and to learn about the world.

(If you have boys who will be getting their Bobcat badge, ask...)

Cubmaster:Our new cubs who want to be Bobcats have studied the Cub Scout promise. Are you boys ready to make that promise now to yourselves, your parents, and the pack?

(Cubmaster shakes head in yes motion. Boys should also shake their heads yes.)

(If you have boys who will be getting their Wolf, Bear, or Webelos badge, ask...)

Cubmaster:As part of being a Cub Scout, you boys who want to advance in rank have followed the Cub Scout Promise. Are you boys ready to renew that promise now to yourselves, your parents, and the pack?

(Cubmaster shakes head in yes motion. Boys should also shake their heads yes.)

Cubmaster:After tonight, you will carry the light of the Christmas candle inside of your heart. The light you will carry will come from the five things you are about to promise. You will promise to:

1. Do you best
2. Do your duty to God
3. Do your duty to your country
4. Help other people
5. And obey the Law of the Pack.

Cubmaster:As you keep the parts of this promise, the Light of Christmas will burn brightly within you for all the world to see. Are you ready to make the promise to yourself, your parents, and to the pack?

(Cubmaster shakes head in yes motion. Boys should also shake their heads yes.)

Cubmaster:Then hold your candle in your left hand, give the Cub Scout sign with your right hand and repeat the Cub Scout Promise with me.

I promise to do my best,
To do my duty to God and my country,
To help other people,
And to obey the Law of the Pack.

Cubmaster:The last thing you promised was to obey the law of the pack. This is the law that binds us all together. So let us all now repeat the law of the pack. Will all scouts that are here tonight please stand, give the scout sign and repeat the law of the pack with me?

The Cub Scout follows Akela.
The Cub Scout helps the pack go.
The pack helps the scout grow.
The Cub Scout gives goodwill.

(Cubmaster motions for audience to be seated.)

Cubmaster:We often talk of the Christmas Spirit, the magic of Christmas. Long ago and far away, Jesus taught that magic to St. Nicholas, or Santa Claus as he has come to be known. So to help bring the magic of Christmas spirit here tonight, I am going to divide the room into two parts.

Cubmaster:When I point to you, I want this half to yell Santa and this half to yell Claus. Ready? One, two, three ...

(Point to first half of the room and yell...)

Cubmaster:Santa! Ready? One, two, three ....

(Point to second half of room and yell...)


(Repeat the yell three times. At the end of the last yell, Santa enters...)

Santa: Ho, Ho, Ho! Merry Christmas!

Cubmaster:Oh, Saint Nicholas, we are so glad you could come! Would you please help us by adding some of your Christmas spirit to our ceremony?

(Santa nods and waves his hand over the punch. While waving his hand over the punch, he discretely drops a lump of dry ice that he has hidden in his palm into the punch. Or, if Santa is carrying a toy sack, he can reach into the sack for the dry ice.)

Cubmaster:Our cubs have shared the Light of Christmas. Now we want to be sure they are also filled with the Christmas spirit. Santa, will you please help me give these boys some of your Christmas spirit?

(Santa nods head. Santa fills cups with punch. Check for dry ice in cups! Cubmaster hands out the cups to the boys, telling them not to drink yet. If you have a small pack, you may consider giving all cubs present a cup. After the punch has been distributed, Cubmaster offers toast...)

Cubmaster:May your heart always be filled with the Christmas spirit.

(Cubmaster and Santa drink, motion for boys to do the same.)

Cubmaster:You are now are filled with the Christmas spirit and carry the Light of Christmas in your hearts. Therefore, you no longer need your candles to show that light. Blow them out now.

(Collect candles and cups.)

(Cubmaster and Santa now distribute badges and tiger pins. If you have a bobcat, you may say....)

Cubmaster:You are now bobcats in this pack. You have promised to help other people. Helping other people is called a doing a good turn. So that the pack can see that you are living up to your promise to help other people, we are going to put your bobcat rank on upside down by turning you upside down. You may turn your rank around after you have done a good turn. When the pack sees your rank right side up, they will know that you are helping others.

(Cubmaster asks each Cub in turn if he wants to be flipped. If he says yes, the Cubmaster and Santa turn the Cub upside-down while parents pin on rank. See the Bobcat Flipover ceremony for detailed instructions on how to do this safely. If you don't know the correct procedure, don't flip the Cubs!)

Cubmaster:Saint Nicholas is very busy this time of year and needs to get back to the North Pole soon. To show him our appreciation, let's give him a big Cub Scout spirit cheer. I want this side of the room to shout Merry, and this side of the room to shout Christmas. Ready? One, two, three, Merry! One, two, three, Christmas!

(As the Cubmaster repeats the cheer two or three times, Santa makes his exit and can disappear.)


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Revised -- December 16, 1995