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Family Feuds

I recently conducted a funeral service for the family who, not only had difficulty in deciding the most fitting tribute to their loved one, but who actually came to blows over who should make the final decision.

It is very difficult for a Celebrant to not 'choose sides' in a ,sometimes, longstanding family feud but, at the end of the day, we must remember who our client is and abide by their wishes as practicably as possible. If one sibling wishes mum or dad to be buried, but the other wants a cremation, a Celebrant can feel like a Diplomat at the United Nations, where neither side are understanding or listening to each other and no-one wants to compromise.

Thankfully, those situations do not arise often and the parties involved find they calm down and think rationally once the Funeral Director and Celebrant become involved; the funeral and what it means becomes more 'real' and they put aside their squabbles, at least until after the service has ended.

The Celebrant's role is to create a bespoke ceremony which best portrays their loved one; whether the remaining family argue about the nature of the service, the deceased's personal history is not up for debate.

Even if the person who has died was not the perfect parent, grandparent, son or daughter to those in whose eyes they fell short, it is our job to give that person a decent funeral which sets out a timeline of their life, the ones they leave behind and give a fitting tribute to a life which has now ended.

So, if you are a member of one such feuding family, please be aware that your Celebrant is advocating for the life of the person who is now gone; whether your quarrels remain or not.

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