Many of us will be with extended family or friends for Christmas Eve. Here is a simple ceremony for the evening. Make it too complicated and you may not do it or some will balk at a drawn out proceeding.
So try this simple reflection for Christmas Eve.
In advance, buy a enough tea light or votive candles for everyone. Have a lighter handy.
Pass out the candles to everyone. You can do this before the meal to increase anticipation or wait till afterwards when everyone may be more relaxed. Prepare everyone that a moment of silence will come after singing the song in a few minutes.
Have one of the children or adults read Luke 2:1-20 or Matthew 1:18-25
Now light one candle and the person with that candle can light the next. This will be difficult with votives or tea lights (some Christian bookstores have long candles with cardboard wax protectors). Keep lighting until everyone's candle is lit.
Sing "Silent Night" while lighting candles.
End the song with a long moment of silence.
Say the Lord's Prayer aloud together or have the eldest person say a prayer (consider asking this person in advance--even before the day so they might prepare or write a prayer or think about appropriate words to pray).