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Funeral Celebrancy

Creating a unique farewell for a unique life


I work as a Civil Funeral Celebrant in Hertfordshire, Cambridgeshire, Bedfordshire, Buckinghamshire, Essex and North London.

I have conducted hundreds of services. My background as a teacher, industrial trainer, master of ceremonies, disc jockey and event planner has helped enormously in dealing with the challenge of creating and conducting very special and personal funeral services.

As a trained Religious Education teacher, I have a good understanding of faith in today’s multi-cultural society.

Services are usually conducted in Crematoria but often include a burial instead of cremation. Some services have been held in the open air - on one memorable occasion in a foot of snow with a clear blue sky!

I also officiate at non-religious interment of ashes ceremonies. For many people, an essential part of the grieving process.

I have produced Funeral Slideshows for many years. These have been used at hundreds of services and receptions and can be included in services that I conduct. They do add a very personal touch to an already special service. Being created by a celebrant is important.

Every person is unique with a story that is uniquely theirs. I try to capture that uniqueness in each service that I am privileged to conduct.

When I meet a family, we work together to create something very special for their loved one and for themselves.

Families get to see the scripts beforehand so that they make any last minute changes.

Sometimes the final script is sent all over the world and read at the same time as the service takes place. The families are given illustrated and bound scripts immediately after the service to keep as a memento as well as on-line PDF versions to send to anyone who was unable to attend the service.

The death of someone close to us is one of the most painful and traumatic things that we experience in life.

They were a unique individual and their funeral service should reflect that uniqueness.

It should be individual, personal and inspiring. It should be a celebration of their life, their character and their personality and reflect their hopes, their aspirations, their joys, their achievements.

It should also be an opportunity for all who knew and loved them, to say their thank you and goodbye in a meaningful way.

During the service, their life will be reflected in your choice of music, poetry, readings and tributes.

The service has three main purposes - to say thank you and farewell to your loved one, to celebrate and honour their life and character and and to support and help you to begin your healing process. It can be completely non religious or semi religious, to include hymns and prayers.

As a Civil Funeral Celebrant I am able to help you to create a service which really does celebrate the life of a very special person in a respectful and caring way.

When we get together, either physically or on a phone, the meeting will generally be in three parts.

This should help you to understand the process.

1. The Day

There are things that need to be decided - generally your funeral arranger will have already talked to you about them, but you may not remember.

I will check that I have all of the correct details - name/time/date/venue etc.

We will discuss going into the chapel - generally people follow. You can be in there first.

We will talk about where you will sit in the chapel - I have pictures of most of the chapels that I work in.

Unless the service is followed by a burial, I will ask you about the curtains. Generally the question is do you want them left open or closed at the end of the service?

Open is less painful, closed gives some people some closure. There is no right or wrong way.

Are you having and Order of Service printed? Who by?

Do you have a reception venue?

A charity? If so how will people make a donation?

2. The Service

We will talk about the service, its length and how it should flow.

What are your music choices?

Are you having hymns?

Is there anyone else who will be speaking? What will they be saying? How long will they speak?

Are there any readings for the beginning and end of the service?

Do you want to include the Lord’s Prayer?

By the end of this part we should have the structure and the order of the service decided.

3. The Person

My opportunity to get to know your loved one through you.

“Thank you so much for your time and support last night.  You made what would have been a gruelling task far more bearable and I for one will always remember with a smile on my face!”

“I would just like to say how lovely it was too meet you today, both Carole & I were dreading it but you made it so easy, so thank you.”

“Steve, thanks very much for the draft. My sister and I have read it and think it is perfect and can’t thank you enough for the effort and professionalism you have put into this for us, and our late father.”

A Celebration for the Life of...

Steve Stacey - Civil Funeral Celebrant

The Meeting (or phone call)