Having been an actor and singer for over thirty-five years, and a peer-counsellor (and teacher of it) for almost as long, funeral celebrancy seemed a natural choice. Twenty years previously, my three siblings and mother and I had created a funeral for my father after his sudden death. With no celebrant, we sat together and forged it with the help of a friend. Then, years later, a family I knew well asked me to help them devise and hold the funeral for their father. Achieving meaningful ceremonies on these two occasions, with no training, showed me that this was a way in which I could offer my heart and mind to others. With the green fuse training behind me, I began working with families to create, together, what they needed and wanted in order to bid farewell to their loved ones. I devote time, thought and care to collaborating with each family to come up with the form and content that is uniquely theirs. I can write and hold the whole ceremony myself if required, or encourage the family to create and deliver their own words, providing support in quietly holding the space on the day, or anything in between. My aim is for the family and community to be able to look back on the ceremony as having been the best possible way to honour and say goodbye to their loved one.
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