Mustn’t let that stop me.

Welcome back dear readers. Well, no, I shouldn’t start with a lie. No one read my last post, I’m pretty sure I didn’t publish it though. Chances are if anyone is reading this it’s because they are researching my early forays into blogging because I have become hideously successful or I’ve murdered someone.

Musn’t let that stop me though, frequently when I talk I am the only one listening.

In my last post I introduced you to the world of independent civil celebrants. Let me tell you why this is what I do.

A few years a go I had attended a run of funerals. I don’t believe there was any particular reason but over the course of eighteen months my back dress had more than paid for itself. After these funerals at the cup of tea (as I know it, wake or purve might be more familiar) I found myself biting my tongue. I wanted to have a pop at the ministers or other officiants. I felt that often the eulogy they gave sounded formulaic or just not fitting for the person. I got increasingly annoyed with having to listen to PR from the person giving the service. Fair enough if they had a relationship with the deceased but often this was not the case.

No one else seemed to notice or mention it and I am not a natural trouble maker (I can say that because no one is reading these) so I continued to hold my tongue. Eventually my curiosity got the better of me so I spend some time on the internet finding out what you needed to have in a funeral and what qualifications you needed to perform them. Answer to both was nothing and none.

Let me be very clear, I have no problem with religion, organised or otherwise. Or Humanism. That being said, ministers of religion or Humanists belong to group of people who all believe the same thing. They all believe the same thing and therefore they all agree to do the same thing. Which is great for their followers, they know what they are getting. There is however a rather large group of people who would say something like: I believe some of it, I agree with some of it, I can’t agree with …, I used to be more into …, I don’t know what mum’dad thought. So for these people the ceremonies are not completely appropriate. I will go into much more detail later about why I think this is and how and where things are changing.

I am of service to these people. I will include or exclude whatever elements families want. I will combine elements in a way a minister of religion could not. So far I have not had a request I couldn’t accommodate. I would love to hear peoples ideas on this, or examples when services have not been fitting.

I am particularly interested in what other cultures and communities do or did. I am writing from Edinburgh, Scotland and I am in my 30’s. Whenever I speak to someone about what services they are familiar with I also learn something new. Even down to what you call where you go after the formal service (purve, wake etc). So please drop me a line.

Nothing fancy in this post, which is breaking my promise but I rather think I was over reaching.


Thistle be me

Welcome to my first blog. I am not the least experienced internet user, I do not mix up upload and download but the University of Vienna has a research  project training dogs to use touch pads . I am somewhere inbetween. So I am open to guidance, hints, tips and one on one tutorials from someone used to teaching cats ballet. I am also asking for some generosity of spirit if I am making horrendous internet gaffs.

Down to business. I am a civil Celebrant, living and working in Edinburgh, Scotland. “Oh Ok” I hear you say because that’s what most people say. Sometimes with a little concern that there;’s about to be a conversation about religion and maybe I am about to start recruiting. Its a lovely way to start a conversation with strangers and near strangers. Lucky that no one puts pressure on first impressions.

A celebrant is a person that performs ceremonies. Civil means non religious. More specifically I am non religious, non state and not a Humanist. Also I am independent of all the groups of celebrants, including the Independent Celebrants Association. Please don’t loose the will to stop reading, I promise its not nearly as complicated as it sounds.

In its simplest terms, I have my own sets of conditions and values regarding what ceremonies I will perform and what content I will include. I haven’t found a group of people to affiliate myself with. But that doesn’t mean I won’t or that I am difficult to get a long with (looking back to those introductions it is hard to believe but please stick with me)

This is a short one because I am sure you are exhausted reading this far and I am certainly exhausted including those links (impressive no?). If this goes well, my next post will have pictures and colour and probably some actual content too.

I am a better reader than I am internerter so I believe I am to ask for questions or comments. Please do, I’ll be delighted if anyone I am not related to gets this far. I am going to be a definite attempt to link this to my twitter account, but I can never really get over the fact it should be called tweeter so don’t hold your breath.

The choice was simple; face the consequences of talking to myself like an elderly parrot or find a better outlet. Hi