How Celebrants Can Help the Funeral Industry

Death is part of life. We all know that, yet many of us are unprepared for it. Loved ones left behind are unsure how to go about laying their deceased family member to rest other than the basic burial or cremation. The funeral is often assumed to be a part of the burial, so they may expect matters to simply fall into place as they just go through the motions: Eulogy, followed by kind words, followed by psalms, followed by hymns, and so on.

You can rise up and go beyond the emptiness of boring traditions and help a lost and grieving family members celebrate the life of their loved in a different and better way with Funeral Celebrants who understand what your clients want and need to say goodbye in a way that feels whole and provides a transition to move on.

Families depend on you to create a memorable funeral.

Grief On HoldWhen family members come into your funeral home to arrange things, they are often dull with grief and expecting you to plan the funeral for them. You will ask them about their loved one and try to come up with enough information for a basic obituary. You can hand the funeral ceremony over to your choice of clergy, knowing you can count on them to get the expected job done. Im sure the clergy will get just enough information to be able to express who the deceased was in life: their beliefs and what they meant to their survivors. The bare essentials created out of those simple guidelines, plus some psalms and hymns to tie things together, you have the basic and expected funeral.

The best way to gain the trust and loyalty of the families you serve is to exceed their expectations! There is a better way and to prepare a funeral that celebrates the deceased and helps those in attendance move through the transitions needed to embrace a life lived and support each other through feelings that are unique to each individual.  Funeral celebrants are trained and certified to write beautiful and creative funerals that go beyond the expected funeral.

We can help you create memories of joy for loved ones left behind.

Funerals Can Be Enlightning

Funerals Can Be Enlightning

Families and friends who have attended traditional funerals often leave as sad as they felt when they arrived. The eulogies often simply address the years of life lived, who they loved and raised, and what they did for a living as they did their duty for love and family. That is all well and good, but what about the joy the deceased had in life? What did they do that gave them pleasure and laughter in life? What did they value and share with their spouse, children, siblings, and friends? What message did they value so much that they would hope would continue beyond their life span and be carried by those they touched in life. Celebrants ask these questions with a complete questionnaire and interview process that stimulates survivors to share real life stories of the deceased. They then craft all they learn into a well written a memorable ceremony that shares their beliefs, values, humor, love, and joy through words, video, music, and anything else the symbolizes the life of the deceased.

When the family comes into your funeral home, they are lost and often unable to think clearly about the funeral. They may be thinking of details such as the casket and burial locations, logistics such as when it will be done and how to get everyone there. The last thing they may think about is how to send off their loved one with meaning. The irony is that the following days after the funeral when they reflect and talk to each other asking “How Was The Funeral”? The first thing they will talk about is the ceremony and how it made them feel. Followed by how did it truly reflect on the life and relationships of the person who died. Did the ceremony say I lived, I mattered, and I cared! That is where the real value of using Celebrants will reflect a positive light on your funeral bussiness.

Who can become a funeral celebrant?

Funeral CelebrantVirtually anyone can become a funeral celebrant, even a licensed funeral director. Grief counselors, hospice care providers, and social workers may have a natural calling to become Celebrants. Member of the clergy are also naturals. The main reason people become funeral celebrants is that they found they have a calling to help assist people to mark or celebrate the important moments in life of the family member who has passed on. Women are far more often drawn to the profession.

Is there a license to become a funeral celebrant?

No, there is no license, but the  funeral celebrants receive training to write and perform the celebration properly and they may even receive certification to indicate their training, but there is no government oversight or regulation. Often Celebrants are also trained in other life events as well, such as births, weddings, divorce and life transitions.

Funeral celebrants come from different walks of life. The may have experienced a traditional funeral and left feeling like something was missing and thought to themselves there must be a better way to say goodbye. They may then search for this better way and ultimately learn about becoming a Funeral Celebrant.

For example, hospice providers are present during the final months of a person’s life. They may listen to the stories of the patient’s life from the patient, their family members, and close friends. When the patient passes away, the loved ones enter a period of sadness and grief, with brief periods of levity caused by the memories of the deceased.

This is a light-bulb moment! They found laughter and joy even in their time of grief! The hospice care provider realizes this is what was missing at the funerals she attended in the past. The patient lived a long, loving and heroic life, why not celebrate who he was at the funeral so that the ones left behind can feel that love and joy as they send them off into the next stage of life! Thus a Funeral Celebrant is born.

What can this mean to your funeral home business?

Funeral Director with head up ass

Typical Response of a Funeral Director on Using Celebrants!

When a family comes to you establishment and you can provide them with much more than a simple tradition and find out how the family really wants to remember them. You can then use the skills of a Funeral Celebrant to create a lovely and memorable celebration that will help sad grieving family and friends leave with love and joy in their hearts.

What does this mean to you? Those who experience a true celebration at a funeral often remark to their families that is how they want their funeral to be when they go. This has proven to increase the public’s desire to pre-arrange funerals. You can setup everything needed for the celebration ahead of time to avoid rushing about and missing important details.

Costs for Funeral Celebrants vary depending on what is needed for the celebration but expect it to cost twice as much as a typical clergy donation. This is mainly because of the simple fact that Celebrants put in much more time and on average take 10 – 12 hours just to interview and write the ceremony. The extra time and effort will show in the quality of a more personalized funeral. Extras may include a Life Celebration Video of the deceased or specific music or even props present at the funeral. The writer may not necessarily be the speaker, so that may be a separate fee. Conversely, the writer may be the speaker, so they may charge a flat fee for the complete service or separate fees for each aspect of the celebration.

Your funeral home is a business that celebrates life.

funeralhome1In every town or city there are several funeral homes. Most are traditional ones that perform the basics. Your funeral home can be the one that stands out as more progressive and truly knows how to celebrate life. When a family loses someone they love, they will look to you to help them. Celebrants are trained to work with funeral directors and consider it their job to shine a positive light on the funeral home the hires them. Your relationship with your Celebrant will grow and you may find new ways to use their services, such as a public holiday service of remembrance or the opening of a new business. They want you to call them again and again so be sure to explain your special needs and likes.

Traditional funerals often do not satisfy people.

In the current social environment there are many people who do not define themselves as religious, thus they may prefer to keep religion out of the funeral service. Instead they may prefer to celebrate the life of the deceased live with stories, music, and videos. They may want to share funny or poignant stories that show who they were in life. Grieving family members may ask for certain songs to be played instead of hymns, certain poetry recited rather than psalms.

A funeral celebrant understands these different expectations and can help you provide these services for your clients. Your job is to help the living say goodbye to the deceased the way they wish to say it. The difference here is that the funeral is planned and arranged with minute detail.  A funeral celebration is a calming balm to the soul in a time of loss and sadness to lift the hearts into love and joy. We encourage you to learn more about Celebrants for your funeral home to take your business to the next level. You can keep up with the current social atmosphere that prefers to celebrate life instead of mourn death. Celebrants are here to help you help your clients say goodbye the way they want to say it: with meaning, with words, with love, and with joy so that they will come back again to your funeral home when they need to say goodbye to another loved one.

To locate a Certified Celebrant in your area you can check out the Celebrant Foundation and Institute or call #973-746-1792
To hire a Celebrant online to write but not perform a ceremony check out our Funeral-Writing-Services.

Jeff Staab is a Vermont based funeral director and Certified Life Cycle Celebrant. He can be reached at #877-365-9474 or

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4 Responses to How Celebrants Can Help the Funeral Industry

  1. Robin Giddens Sheppard says:

    A great article explaining the Funeral Celebrant. I became a celebrant several years ago and have found it an enriching and fulfilling role.

  2. Pam Vetter says:

    Great story! You understand the need, the problems encountered with funeral homes and the solution. Keep up the good work in helping families!

  3. Rich Karelse says:

    i became a celebrant in 2007. What a great opportunity to serve families. Families like this change and funeral directors are slow to change or don’t understand the need.

  4. Thanks for the information. Funerals can be a really hard time. Having it be a celebration of your loved one’s life sounds like a beautiful way to say goodbye. In the last few years, many of my great aunts and uncles have passed away and, because they had lived full lives, the funeral and the luncheons seemed more like a joyful meeting of people who loved them. Cultivating that feeling at a funeral seems like a wonderful idea.

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