FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
I will arrange to meet you before the service so that we can create a memorable occasion for your loved one together. Many people are not sure what to expect before my visit, so it may help you to prepare by taking a look at the following answers to the most frequently asked questions.
If you have any other questions, please do not hesitate to contact me.
What is a funeral celebrant?
A Celebrant is someone who can help you create a unique funeral service or ceremony that is right for you and honours your loved one. They will conduct the service and take on the main speaking role.
Will you come to see me at home?
Yes, most family meetings take place in the home. I’ll come and visit you at a mutually agreed time that’s convenient for you. If it’s not convenient, or circumstances dictate, we can set up a Skype, Facetime or phone call instead.
Who should attend the meeting?
It’s entirely up to you. Some people prefer to deal with things on their own, others want family and friends around them for support or to share memories of your loved one.
How should I prepare for your visit?
I’ll be guiding and advising you and making practical suggestions about the content and the structure of the service. We’ll start by planning the Order of Service and go through some ideas together. We’ll then move onto speaking about your loved one, so it would really help if you could have a think about the following to get us started.
* Specific readings, poems or music that you would like to include
* Important people that played a significant part in their life or were dear to them
* Significant events – place and date of birth, marriage
* Where they lived and worked
* Their hobbies, interests, achievements and highlights
* Words that describe them
* What they will be most remembered for
* Humorous stories or anecdotes
* Particular things they would say
* Whether they held any beliefs or philosophies on life and death
* Were they ‘a bit of a character’? Tell me all about them!
Should I have a photograph of my loved one handy?
Yes please. I would love to see a photograph of your loved one to help me get to know them better. It doesn’t have to be a paper photograph – a picture on your phone or computer is just as good.
Roughly how long will the meeting take?
Usually our meeting will take between one and a half to two hours.
What happens after your visit?
I’ll take lots of notes during our meeting and after my visit I’ll use these to draft the script for the service. I don’t use a standard template – every single service I conduct is completely unique. I’ll then share my draft with you for your approval.
Who should speak on the day?
Anyone who wants to. I always encourage family and friends, including children, to take part in the service if they would like to. It’s possible that you might find it too difficult to speak on the day, in which case, I can read your tribute for you.
Can you advise on music and poetry?
Yes, I can help you to find something fitting that reflects the personality of your loved one.
Can we perform a musical tribute ourselves?
Definitely. Musical tributes can make a beautiful contribution to the service.
Can we have hymns, prayers and readings?
You can have whatever you want. You can have a semi-religious service or just include a small religious element. It’s entirely up to you.
Can we include some special touches?
Yes, I encourage you to be as creative as you want to make the occasion more personal and create fond memories for everyone. Some people also like to bring a little humour to a sad event.
Special touches could be symbolic, such as lighting a candle, or include asking family and close friends to act as pall bearers or asking people to wear certain colours. You could place a large framed photo of your loved one, or an item of significance, in a prominent position or lay single stem flowers or a favourite book or hat on the coffin during the service or invite people to write messages and place them around the coffin.
How long will the service last?
The funeral service usually lasts between 20 to 30 minutes. If you find that you need more time, you would need to consider booking an extra slot, if this available, through your Funeral Director. Other ceremonies may be shorter or longer in duration.
Will you send me a draft of the services?
Absolutely. I’ll send you a draft of the full service to make sure that whatever I say is accurate and reflects your wishes for your loved one.
What happens on the day?
On the day of the funeral or ceremony, I’ll be at the venue waiting for you. I’ll lead the service and read the script that that has been agreed between us. I’ll also direct you to come and speak, sing or play an instrument, if you are participating in the service.
What other services do you offer?
I can help with planning a funeral in advance, scattering and interment of ashes ceremonies, memorial and remembrance services and saying goodbye to pets.
How can I contact you?
You can either email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or call me on 07952 054 660.
Copyright ©2019 Teri Berkengoff | Web design & images by Donegan Decor