To everything there is a season… a time for every purpose on earth. A Time to be born and a time to die.
A New Approach to Funerals - Very often people say 'that was the best funeral I have ever been to!' - the reason being that Civil Funerals are inspirational, unique, meaningful and a positive & caring way to clebrate the life of your loved one - the funeral of your choice!
The loss of a loved one is a painful and difficult experience. A funeral is not just about the person who has died. It is also an important time for helping you who are left behind to share and express your thoughts and memories - to make it an occasion that honours and celebrates the life of the person who has died, but also to come to terms with your loss and hopefully help to initiate the beginning of your healing process.
Although it is a time to say goodbye, many people feel that it is also right to celebrate the life of their loved one. A Civil Funeral Service is becoming a very popular option. When a family member or close friend dies you may be feeling sad, bewildered and emotional. There are many decisions to be made in a very short timescale. Ensuring that the service is carried out in a careful, compassionate and fitting manner is probably foremost in your mind at this time.What you will be looking for is someone who is sincere, trustworthy, competent, and gentle. I am a sensitive and caring celebrant, with a vast experience of delivering unique and inspirational ceremonies. I feel that to help and guide families through one of life’s most difficult journeys is an honour and a privilege.
I do not represent any particular belief system and I realise that every family is different. Your choices may be influenced by many factors:- the wishes of your love one who has recently passed away, religious or spiritual beliefs and cultural decisions. Above all it should be special and personal.
We are all born as unique human beings with our own set of talents, qualities, and gifts. We live lives that are completely different to one another in our own way; why should our passing from this life be any different but unique? No one gets to choose how they come into the world but they do get to choose how they live their life and they/their families should get to choose how they leave life.
Why it's important to have a funeral There are compelling reasons why funerals matter. A funeral provides a profound experience that ultimately aids in the grieving process.
The 6 key reasons why funerals matter are:
They bring together friends and family whose support and compassion give us comfort and perspective.
They help us express our grief in a safe setting.
They let us share memories, tributes, and appreciation for the unique life of the person being remembered and so celebrate their life!
They encourage our acceptance of loss and help us to heal.
They help us acknowledge the reality of death.
They provide us with a sense of continuity — that life goes on.
More than endings, funerals are bridges of transition. As time passes and grief subsides, we appreciate more fully the relationship that endures. We see that the words spoken and feelings experienced during the funeral help us reach a place of fond memory and deep appreciation for the person whose life is celebrated.
That is why I believe that conducting funerals is a sacred trust. I keep this trust uppermost in mind when serving you.
The important point is that we need ritual and ceremony to help us comprehend major life changes. When words are inadequate, we use ritual. It is no different than the experiences we have at baptisms and weddings. "We will not get through the question about what's next unless we have a presence, a language, a ritual." — Thomas Lynch
What can the funeral include? A funeral can include many elements, we have so much choice. It is essential that a picture is painted of your loved one’s life to serve as a focal point for others thoughts. I will put together their story with loving and treasured memories, important dates, achievements, funny anecdotes etc. to demonstrate the essence of who they were. I will also suggest ways to make the whole service more personal and fitting by discussing favourite music, poems, readings etc., the opportunity for other members of the family or friends to speak and ways in which those closest can be involved (candle lighting, placing of flowers on the coffin during the ceremony, release of white dove/balloons or blowing of bubbles etc.). Far from being sad and sombre, the ceremonies I create are positive and uplifting because they focus on life and not on death. I am passionate that this is your ceremony and should reflect your wishes.
I find much joy and satisfaction in assisting families with providing a personal and very special funeral.I come to this work with a warm heart, and a desire to support others.I put dedicated time and effort into each ceremony that I write and officiate.
I am honored to perform these ceremonies. I feel that everyone should have a ceremony that reflects who they are, their view of the world and their family. I respect the beliefs and traditions of all families that I work with. I do not use a ceremony as a platform to promote my personal beliefs but rather to assist you in celebrating yours.My hope is to always offer a family a ceremony that they feel comfortable with and that reflects who they are.Together, we can 'co-create' a meaningful and special ceremony that is uniquely yours.
Where can a civil funeral take place? A Civil Funeral Ceremony can take place almost anywhere you wish. Usually at a crematorium but I have also conducted many funerals at non-religious burial grounds or woodland burial sites. I have also taken funeral ceremonies in a hall, a meeting room and at people's homes. Some families ask me to take memorial ceremonies sometime after the funeral and this can happen literally anywhere, a hotel, around a place of beauty, a woodland or again at your home.
Pre-arranged funerals – As a Civil Celebrant I also visit those who have a desire to discuss and and plan their own funeral, offering advice and support during those final days.
During our lives we plan for many situations and events along the way - Weddings, Holidays, Families, Retirement etc . . . However many of us don't think about planning our own funeral.
My experience dealing with families after a bereavement, is that whilst it is not necessary for everything to be arranged in advance, very often it would be of tremendous help if families knew the answers to a few simple questions. Burial or Cremation? Music?, Readings? Place of service and what type of Ceremony? Religious or not?
When a person is suffering a terminal illness, they quite often need to discuss their final requests and requirements with a third party who can be entrusted to see that those wishes are complied with. It can be too difficult to discuss the subject of your own funeral with your family and friends. I offer guidance, ideas, recommendations and assistance to enable you to have the funeral of your choice.
When an individual is faced with the dreaded news that their illness is terminal, they either embrace religion or detach themselves from it altogether.
Families of loved ones who have just passed away are faced with many difficult decisions. There is a lot to do in the arrangements following a death in the family. There can be no better final gift to your family than to present them with your wishes; including your choice of music, readings, poems, etc for your funeral and to provide the details of your life so that a full and fitting tribute can be included. All this adds up to the making of a real celebration and is one that the family usually really appreciate at a time that is already so emotionally difficult.
Fees - I have full confidence in the fairness of my fees. Extensive efforts have been taken to assess fair costs in comparism with other celebrant services in the areas I cover. You will find my prices are more than fair - this is not just a business for me - it is my vocation! I love and enjoy helping you create lasting memories on the most special of days! Please call or e-mail for a quotation.
A Civil Funeral is one that is chosen in keeping with the opinions and values of the family and the person who has passed away not by the opinions of the person conducting the funeral
"We will not get through the question about what's next unless we have a presence, a language, a ritual." — Thomas Lynch
Experienced Civil Celebrant, Officiant covering Bedfordshire, Milton Keynes, Northamptonshire, Buckinghamshire, Cambridgeshire, Hertfordshire and all surrounding areas
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