Especially during Induction and Investiture, clubs around the North American Division often use candles to signify the "Spirit of Pathfinders" or "Spirit of Adventurers," the class levels (Adventurers / Pathfinders), and even to represent each of the new inductees into the club ministry.
However, recently, many churches and therefore clubs have moved to electric lights or other versions of symbolism to avoid the potential risks they see as part of flame inside the facility. So, the question is, does Adventist Risk Management (ARM) allow candles, suggest other alternatives, or ban open flame within church-owned facilities?
David Fournier, the Regional Manager for ARM North America states:
While candles are not excluded from the insurance policy provided by Adventist Risk Management, Inc. we do take their use seriously as there is significant risk. Any activity involving fire represents a danger that is fast moving and can result in catastrophic damage and personal injury.
Also it should be noted that the authority in your local jurisdiction (likely the fire marshal) has final say on whether candles would be allowed as per the NFPA Life Safety code. You will want to check with the local authority. (Download - important prevention document here)
- ARM strongly cautions the use of candles in church-owned/rented facilities because of the high potential for loss
- The local Fire Authority (Fire Marshall) is the final word on whether the candles would even be allowed.
So, are there other options that work well and avoid the catastrophic potential of open flame? Yes there are.
One club in Texas posted the following:
This morning we had our Induction Service. doing a no candle ceremony.
We had an LED candle representative of the Spirit of Pathfinders and Adventurers.
We colored water according to each level of Adventurers and Pathfinders. Red ribbons for Pathfinders and Blue ribbons for Adventurers [decorated the front of each colored-water decorative container]. Each new member added a pebble to the bottle representative of their class. ~ Glorimar Teixeria, NAD Adventurer Advisory