I was thrilled to be named the Good Funeral Award Celebrant of The Year 2018 last September. Having been shortlisted alongside those Celebrants who I would considered more experienced, I was totally humbled and honoured to win the award. Despite me winning, I felt I represented a group of brilliant people who provide a unique service to celebrate the lives of unique people. Together, and alongside other Funeral Professionals we are all working to show the ultimate respect to those who have died.
It means so much to have been nominated in the first place. Added to the endorsement by the judges, the kindness and respect shown from colleagues within the funeral service (who said such kind things when they knew I had been nominated), as well as my partner and friends has been amazing.
I would not be where I am without the initial training and belief from Terri Shanks. Back in 2014 I was a very nervous newbie who entered the room and participated in the Funeral Celebrancy course. My respect and thanks to all at The Fellowship of Professional Celebrants and other Celebrants for their ongoing support.
My background is Nursing and Social Work but I had always had an interest in bereavement since my mother died in the 80s. I later trained as a Funeral Director. When I found Celebrancy, all the skills, knowledge and experience I had gained along the way fell into one place.
I am passionate about and love my role which I have been doing full time since April 2017. Being entrusted to support families when they are most vulnerable is a responsibility I don't take lightly. Meeting families for the first time is a pleasure. I love listening to their stories and have learned so much about the rich lives their loved ones have experienced. I have understood far more about real social history which taps into my love of history at school.
Then comes the creative part. Sitting in front of a blank computer screen to put a persons life into a narrative excites me. That creativity comes in all different shapes and forms from working with a theme. Like linking Abba hits to different parts of the persons life. Or taking the congregation on an imaginary road trip to the places the person had been. Each ceremony must reflect the person and the biggest compliment (more than the award) is being asked 'How long have you known them?' as people leave. Yes as a human being, I have made mistakes (like saying mammories instead of memories at a funeral.) I felt the blush from head to toes! But I always learn and hope I show ultimate respect for the Deceased person and their families.
The funeral itself is team work. Every funeral is different and being able to work alongside different Funeral Directors, teams and different crematoria staff is essential. Together we create a funeral as if it the only one happening.
My motivation is and will always be to serve the memory of those who have died and those they leave behind.
The Good Funeral Award received will always be treasured alongside the experiences and learning gained from Funeral Celebrancy. This is a service I am thrilled to be associated with. So I look forward to continuing on this journey.
For Further Information, visit: www.davidmilesuk.com.
Having attended Terri’s course (with some insight into the funeral industry) I can say that the course has provided me with the confidence and motivation to sell myself as a funeral celebrant. With the new knowledge and materials acquired from this course, obviously combined with my previous experience and skills I am already in the process of setting up my funeral celebrant services. A funeral ce…
I must say that I thought Terri was pretty amazing. I can’t think of anyone who feels so passionate about what they do, I said to Terri that I have never put anyone on a pedestal before now but she really is an inspiration. Terri came across as a true professional and I also liked her passion about promoting celebrancy and getting it regulated.
I attended the Marriage and Family Celebrancy training in Worthing and cannot rate this training highly enough. Terri is a lovely person, as well as being incredibly knowledgable about this industry. The group were a very friendly lot, all of whom I will continue to keep in touch with. I have decided that celebrancy is definately the career path for me, and will be attending the funeral celebrancy…
Terri makes everything easy to understand and enjoyable to learn, for such a potentially sad subject the training empowers one to go out there and create beautiful personal tributes for someone’s saddest moment in life.
I like the fact that the Fellowship of Professional Celebrants is all about the training and support of celebrants and less about making money! The forum is an invaluable support n…
Hi Terri, this is just to say thank you for a very exciting, life-changing two days training with you. I was impressed by so much of what I learned, as well as by the seemingly effortless way the training (and refreshments!) were organised.
What a lovely group of people!
I’m looking forward to moving forward into a much more meaningful phase in my life, and feel very proud to be a member of The Fe…
I wasn’t sure if Terri’s training would be sub-standard when I compared the price of her training to the cost of similar courses which were almost 3 times the price! How wrong I was, the training was EXCELLENT and gave me everything I need to start my this new chapter of my life . I know I can now start my career as a celebrant with knowledge of the funeral industry in general, and with a real und…
I thoroughly recommend taking the course in Funeral Celebrancy. Terri is an inspiring, experienced and dedicated celebrant and facilitator. The course surpassed all my expectations, the quality, presentation, and the sharing of such a wealth of experience really made for a life changing three days. I feel well equiped and supported to go forward into this work, and to help pave the way for a futur…
I attended the marriage and family celebrant training course run by Terri and found myself on the first all female session with a group of very different but all like minded lovely individuals. With Terri’s relaxed, friendly guidance we covered weddings, renewal of vows, baby naming ceremonies and the slighter more unusual divorce healing ceremony. What was particularly helpful for me was learni…
The Funeral Celebrancy course delivered by Terri Shanks was a wonderful and inspirational experience and exceeded all my expectations. Terri’s training, advice and support has given me a great grounding in the world of celebrancy and I look forward to treading down my new path and hopefully one that will help and support many others.