On 23 March 2020, the UK Government introduced new measures relating to social gathering with the aim of slowing down the spread of COVID-19 in the UK.
In his address to the nation, the Prime Minister said, ‘We’ll stop all social events, including weddings, baptisms and other ceremonies, but excluding funerals.’
From 24 March 2020, only immediate close family are advised to attend funerals, and family members are asked to respect social distancing guidelines at the crematorium. Celebrants will encourage mourners not to hug, kiss, or shake hands, and instead will ask them to show compassion by other methods such as the right hand over the heart or a nod of the head. Song sheets are advised against as are Orders of Service.
In light of the new measures and restrictions, Humanist Ceremonies celebrants are offering the following options:
Humanist funerals and memorials are non-religious ceremonies that support family and friends to mourn and to celebrate the person who has died. They focus on the life they led, the relationships they forged, and the legacy they left. They are based on the humanist perspective that every life is individual and valuable.
Ceremonies are conducted by humanist celebrants and are both a celebration of a life and a dignified, personal farewell. They’re the perfect option for families who want a sincere, personal reflection on the life of their loved one. This can be especially important if the person who died wasn’t particularly religious, meaning a religious funeral could feel inauthentic and not true to who they were in life.
Humanist funerals and memorial services offer a personal and fitting way to support families in saying goodbye to those who have lived without religion. Many thousands are conducted by our celebrants each year.
While a funeral director is the professional most likely to deal with the practical arrangements of a funeral, what type of ceremony you choose is entirely up to you.
Humanists UK funeral celebrants are sensitive people, empathetic to the experience of bereavement, and focused on providing a funeral ceremony that will be most fitting for the circumstances. They are familiar with cremation and burial procedures and will guide you through the whole process of arranging a funeral ceremony.
What people say about humanist ceremonies
‘You struck exactly the right tone and balance. Many people commented to me that they could not believe that you had never met her! People were also very interested to hear details of her life. For most it was the first time they had attended a humanist service of any description and I only received positive comments. They appreciated the honesty of the service and the fact that it was all about my mother with no other influences.’
‘Whilst still sad, people thought it was a beautiful and uplifting funeral and many commented that it was the most personal funeral they’d ever been to.’
We are proud to be associated with:
If you are planning your own funeral, you can find some helpful resources here.
You may also like to buy a copy of Humanists UK’s book, Funerals Without God.