Let Your Light Shine #LIGHTtheWORLD

In Matthew 5:14-16 it says:

Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid.

Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house.

Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.

We need to let our lights shine! This year, as we celebrate Christmas and #LIGHTtheWORLD, shine your light in more ways than one with this lantern project.


To make your lantern, you will need a tin can. I used one of the food storage cans but you can also use a regular can size. You will also need my lantern pattern (the star from the #LIGHTtheWORLD logo) a nail, and a hammer. I also like at least one glove to hold the frozen can.

Before you begin to hammer in a pattern, you will need to fill your can with water and freeze it. This helps you hammer in a pattern without denting the can. It’s also a whole lot easier to hammer. Note: When you begin to hammer, some of the ice will chip off so do it in a place where that’s okay!

Next, print out my star pattern (or pick another design you want) and place over the spot on your can where you want to hammer in the holes. Usually with the condensation, the paper will stay pretty well but I like to secure mine with one nail just to be safe. The pattern is just a guide. You may need to adjust according to the bumps on your can and the size of the nail you decide to use. I used two sizes of nails in mine. Hold your pattern on securely and start hammering holes into your can. You don’t need to hammer too far down, just enough to make a hole in your can but not so far it’s hard to remove the nail.

When you are done, let your ice melt and dry off your can (To speed up the melting process, you can put your can in a bath of hot water. You only need it to melt enough to slide the ice out). Hammer down any extra pokey edges on the inside if needed. The bottom of your can will pop out a bit when it freezes so you’ll need to hammer the bottom back down too. It should only take a few taps.

Place a candle inside your lantern and yourre done! You can also do this project with a brown paper bag and pin. You’ll need to weigh your bags down with sand or a rock though.

#LIGHTtheWORLD with your Lantern and Your Service

This lantern can be a great object lesson for your family as well. Show your family your lantern and how cool it looks in the dark when you put one candle inside. Ask them how neat they think it would look if you put 24 candles inside (or however many candles you have). Tell them as we each perform acts of service every day no matter how big or small, the lights inside us grow brighter. Then share the scripture in Matthew 5:14-16 with them and encourage them to let their lights shine and not to hide it under a bushel. You can also show a video from lighttheworld.org and discuss what the light really is. People (and bugs) are attracted to light!

At your weekly family council, ask your family how they have been able to light the world during the week. After each thing is said, they can put a candle inside the can (I got these battery operated tea light candles- there are 24 in a box). Show how much brighter your lantern is because of each of their kind acts. Then ask if they think you can make it even brighter next week. It’s also a great opportunity to talk about why we might want to shine our lights brighter.

Other Ways to Use Your Lantern:

  • Put a candle inside your lantern along with a note about how someone you know lets their light shine. Add any other goodies you want and deliver it to that person with a Thank You note.

  • Put a candle, some treats, and a copy of the Book of Mormon inside your lantern. Write a note saying how the Book of Mormon and Jesus Christ bring light into your life as well as some of the things you appreciate about that person. Then deliver it with an invitation to your ward Christmas party, the special Christmas sacrament meeting on December 23, or one of your Family Home Evenings.

  • Bring it to your primary class. Save a few minutes at the beginning of your class for the children to share ways they let their light shine that week adding additional battery operated tea lights into your lantern. The Sunday after Christmas, be sure to show them how many lights they have added in just one month and encourage them to keep shining all year.

  • Line the path to your door with #LIGHTtheWORLD lanterns and share why you have them as people comment on them.

  • Pass out lanterns to your friends and neighbors with a #LIGHTtheWORLD bingo board to encourage them to let their lights shine too.

  • Do it on your own! Put a candle in each day you do an act of service and watch your lantern get brighter.

  • Make these lanterns during Activity Days or Scouts! Send them home with a #LIGHTtheWorld calendar and encourage them to let their lights shine.

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