When a loved one dies, it can be difficult for relatives and close friends, whether sudden or expected. The emotion and grief may sweep you up; specific responsibilities need to be carried out, including arranging the funeral. You may have had an opportunity to speak to the person who has died before their death, and you may have some understanding of their wishes regarding their funeral service.
On the other hand, you may have no idea where to start, what to ask or who to approach for help. A funeral celebrant is now a popular choice for officiating services. This article will help ensure that you choose an appropriate celebrant for your requirements by highlighting 6 questions to ask before appointing a funeral celebrant.
Choosing a Funeral Celebrant
A funeral is a very personal affair, every person and family will have different expectations, and you can tailor the service to reflect the individual who has died. Funeral celebrants can deliver a ceremony with or without religious elements such as prayer and hymns and ensure that the service is entirely bespoke. However, each Celebrant will have different experiences and ideas and offer their unique approach to delivering a funeral service. In choosing a Celebrant, you should ensure that you can work together effectively and comfortably to plan and deliver the funeral that best suits you.
We have put together some questions that you may like to ask potential funeral celebrants before agreeing to work with them. Many funeral directors work with one or two celebrants they recommend; however, it is worth doing your own research and reaching out to other local celebrants to ensure that you find the right match. Steve is local to the Staffordshire area, offering his Celebrant services at locations in and around Staffordshire; you can contact him to discuss his approach to conducting a funeral service and how it might fit in with your requirements.
What sort of service do you deliver?
A Celebrant will usually perform funeral services in venues linked to graveyards and crematoriums. A celebrant led service can include religious content; however, humanists do not offer this because of their core beliefs. So, depending on the wishes of the person who has died, choosing an appropriate celebrant is very important.
Talk to potential celebrants about the type of service that they provide. If your loved one enjoyed listening to hymns, then you need to ensure that the Celebrant you choose to work with is ok to include religious content within the service.
How much help will you give me in planning the funeral service?
Planning a funeral can be a daunting task, and you may have many questions, including:
- How should the funeral service flow?
- What should we talk about?
- What type of readings/music should be included?
- How many readings/musical elements
- How long should it last?
- How should the service end?
If you have a firm idea of how the funeral should flow, you may need a celebrant willing to execute your ideas with very little input from them. However, if, like many people, you are planning a funeral and you do not know where to start, then a Celebrant will guide you through the process. They will offer suggestions and support that would be a better fit for you. Of course, if this is the case, you should feel comfortable talking to your chosen celebrant and want to learn about the life of the person who has died, enabling them to provide that personalised funeral service.
Are any additional services offered?
Some Celebrants offer additional services to enhance the personalisation of the funeral further. Steve can create a photographic tribute of the person that has died, for example. And this can be used as part of the service and sent on to you afterwards as a keepsake. Other celebrants may offer something different, so it is worthwhile speaking to several before making your final choice.
How flexible are you?
Some Celebrants can get booked up quite quickly; others will only offer their time on a limited schedule. It is crucial to establish whether the Celebrant will perform the ceremony on the date and time required. Of course, if you find the perfect Celebrant, you may need to be flexible with the timing of the ceremony to ensure it fits around other bookings that the Celebrant already has.
What experience do you have?
There is no legal requirement for any specific training to be a funeral celebrant; however, it would be advisable to find out more about any potential celebrant to ensure that they have the relevant experience to execute the funeral service professionally. Steve is a member of the Association of Independent Funeral Celebrants. He has many years of experience, and his ethos is that every funeral should be as unique as the person’s life. Steve is also a qualified Grief Specialist and can help create a ceremony that offers some pastoral support to the family. And as a registered Dementia Friend, he offers Dementia Friendly services too.
There are several Celebrant directories that you could use to help you find an established Celebrant in your local area. The Celebrant Directory has global awards to recognise the talent and hard work of the best funeral celebrants in the industry. Steve has been nominated for four such awards in 2021, highlighting his dedication to the industry and vast experience in delivering quality and compassionate funeral services.
Do you have any reviews?
Choosing a funeral celebrant is a big decision. It is ok to ask for reviews; these can reassure that the service will be a fitting tribute to the person who has died. You can see recent reviews for Steve here. The directories listed above often include reviews for the celebrants listed, making them a good source of information when making your choice. Of course, another option when searching for a funeral celebrant may be to ask for a personal recommendation from family and friends.
Questions To Ask When Choosing a Funeral Celebrant
Above, we have covered 6 questions that you may like to consider asking when choosing a funeral celebrant. It is essential to take the time to consider your options and work with a professional celebrant that will perform a unique service for your loved one.
When contacting Steve, please do feel free to discuss any of the above questions and others you may have. It is important to Steve that your loved one’s funeral reflects their final wishes. He believes that the service should be unique and leave you celebrating the life lost, remembering their achievements, those special memories and the quirks of personality that each of us has. Do not hesitate to contact Steve if you think that he would be the ideal Celebrant to conduct the funeral ceremony of your loved one.