So, today, after meeting some people for the first time over coffee, I was asked what I did for a living.
‘I’m a Civil Celebrant’ I replied.
And there it was! That gaze. That blank look. It still amazes me how many people have never heard of and have no idea what a Celebrant is or does.
I decided to look up the word in a few resources
Collins English Dictionary – ‘A celebrant is a person who performs or takes part in a religious ceremony’.
Wikipedia – ‘Celebrant or Officiant, the leader of a liturgy or ceremony who is empowered to perform it’.
Funeral Celebrants (Civil) – ‘A conductor of funerals for non church people’
There you have it, no wonder people are confused.
I first took an interest in the role of a Celebrant after arranging my father’s funeral. As I wasn’t fully prepared for the task, I didn’t really know how to start. All I knew was that my father wouldn’t have wanted a church ceremony.
The Funeral Director put me in touch with a Celebrant. She came to visit me and the family at my home where we told her all about my dad and his life from birth through to death.
I was very impressed with her professionalism and understanding, with the information we gave her she wrote his story and delivered it beautifully on the day of the funeral.
There were no hymns or prayers, as that would have been my father’s wishes, however, saying that, a prayer or hymn could have been put into the ceremony if we had wished. Therefore, the Collins Dictionary definition isn’t quite right.
In recent years, I have been to numerous wedding ceremonies and funerals and a few have left me feeling, a little disappointed. Some of the officiants leading the ceremony, where not heartfelt, did not engage the family or friends and just didn’t make the ceremony one to remember.
Now as qualified Civil Celebrants, my husband and I can conduct Wedding, Baby Naming and Funeral ceremonies. We are happy to include a prayer or hymn into the ceremony if that is what you and family wish for. Sometimes, many feelings, beliefs and customs must be catered for in just one ceremony so our job, is keeping all parties involved as happy as possible.
Life Event Ceremonies are important; they are days that we want to cherish and mean something to everyone involved. Everyone has different expectations, people from all walks of life, from different countries, with different beliefs and ideas about how to conduct such occasions. We feel honoured every day to be learning about these traditions and be involved in such personal events.
We look forward to working alongside you, listening and connecting, we can help you design a bespoke ceremony which you and your family will remember forever.