About Me as a Funeral Celebrant

Funerals have always had an impact on me – either positively, because they really captured and paid meaningful tribute to the person who had died; or negatively, when a service was so impersonal or cold that it simply did not do justice to the person or give solace to family and friends.

Photograph of Sally as celebrant

Death is one of the most important parts of life - it's the ending of someone's story and a new chapter for those left behind. What could be more important than marking the death in a way which pays tribute to a life lived, and comforts family and friends in their loss? I became a funeral celebrant because I want to help people do just that, with as much input and participation as family and friends want to make.

My experience is that people take inspiration and comfort from a range of different sources and want the freedom to reflect that. My personally-tailored funerals respect and honour your wishes. I take the lead from you about what you need - to remember, pay tribute, and be comforted in your grief. And I reflect the tone you want to set - sombre or bright colours, the balance between reflection and celebration, and how much humour to include.

Having delivered the eulogy at my mum's funeral (around a poem I wrote), I know how important and healing a personally-tailored service can be. I also have a lifelong love of words, music, poems and readings, all of which lend themselves to helping compose and deliver funeral ceremonies.

Training

I originally trained and was authorised as a humanist funeral celebrant. It’s a grounding for which I'll always be grateful but I found that it didn't reflect what many families wanted such as religious or spiritual content. Nor was I being true to who I am and what inspires and comforts me. So I decided to become an independent celebrant. This means I’m not limited by particular beliefs and can draw from a range of sources for ceremonies e.g. religious, non-religious and spiritual.

As well as my celebrancy training, I also draw on the skills and experience I have as a counsellor and on the public speaking I did as part of my job as a civil servant.

I've been delivering my own ceremonies since April 2014. You can find testamonials about my services under what people say.

Advance Wishes

Death is the one thing in life that we know will happen to us, sometime, and yet it's something that is often very difficult to talk about. I support moves to talk about death more openly and am a member of the Good Life, Good Death, Good Grief alliance. More people are beginning to think what they would like for their own funeral, so I also offer a service for people wanting to record advance wishes.

Contact: 07814 847059 | funerals@sallypendreigh.com