casket with flowers, blue sky

When someone dies there is so much to think about. It’s a very emotional time and it can be difficult to know where to start. Planning the funeral might not be foremost in your mind, but your thoughts will eventually come around to it. Most funeral directors will offer help and guidance with the process.

When it comes to the ceremony itself you might have some ideas about the music you would like played or what readings you might want. Some people give instructions about what they want at their own funerals. The structure of the ceremony can vary too, however the most usual form is as follows.

  • Entry of the coffin, with music
  • Words of welcome
  • Thoughts on life and death
  • A tribute
  • Reflection, either a short silence or some music
  • Committal, when the curtains close at a cremation or the coffin is lowered at a burial
  • Closing words
  • Exit music

As a Humanist Celebrant it is my job to provide the ceremony that is right for you and appropriate and fitting for the deceased person. In most cases I will meet with you and spend some time discussing the ceremony.  I will try to find out as much as I can about the person to then write a fitting tribute to them. I will send a draft to you for approval. Once this is agreed and any other contributions included I will then lead the ceremony on the day.

Afterwards I will provide a high quality printed copy of the ceremony for you to keep.

Link to YouTube Video of a recent memorial ceremony

Link to extracts of a funeral I conducted.