The most meaningful funeral captures the life and personality of the person, which can be shown through the choice of music, poems and flowers and the involvement of family and friends.
Every ceremony is unique and personal, and music can be crucial in setting the tone and feel. Music can bring people together in emotionally distressing times and also give pointers back to the past, drawing on family traditions that have been laid down and maintained over the years. Hymns and religious music are sometimes chosen for this reason and it is always moving to see family and friends stand and sing a favourite hymn together.
The dictionary definition of a celebrant is: ‘a person who performs a rite’. This has traditionally meant a vicar, minister or priest, with the ceremony taking place in a church or other religious building. These days, we have more choices and the importance of selecting the right celebrant for your loved one’s celebration of life cannot be underestimated.
It was a warm, sunny day as Steph and Morgan celebrated their wedding with their family and friends at Middle Coombe Farm, Tiverton.
The scene was set under the oak tree.
I have been privileged to be a part of Naomi and Graham’s journey together as they first asked me to lead their renewal of vows ceremony seven years ago. Since then, we have celebrated on the beach at Watergate in Cornwall and here in their garden but, sadly, their plans to celebrate their 8th anniversary in 2020 was cancelled due to Covid 19.
On a beautiful day in August I was excited to perform a Naming and Blessing ceremony for the Gould family near Exeter. It was even more special as the ceremony had been postponed many times due to Covid 19.
Michelle and Richard had asked me to write a ceremony to name their three children and also to celebrate and bless their family in front of their guests.
Each child lit a candle as a symbol of their unity with each other. The candles will be re-lit on their birthday each year as a reminder of the celebration.
As their guests made their promises to the children, they came forward to place their roses into a vase symbolising their love and support for this wonderful family.
Michelle and Richard had chosen four Fairy Godparents to also care and support the children.
Will you promise to be an ear to listen, a voice to advise and a pair of arms that will always have a hug waiting when it’s needed and sometimes when it’s not?
They also witnessed Michelle and Richard signing the Certificate.
It was fitting that music from the Disney film, Moana, was chosen – You’re Welcome!
After the ceremony we all made our way outside to blow bubbles and raise our glasses to Team Gould!