As part of our team at ARKA Original Funerals, we are proud to include experienced and gifted celebrants. We are unique in this respect too.
Our celebrants not only create beautiful and personal funeral ceremonies, they are also trained and experienced in every practical aspect of organising a funeral ceremony and are fully committed to our ethos of ecological awareness. They were carefully chosen to be ARKA celebrants and most have been part of our team for many years.
ARKA Original Funerals is committed to supporting people of all beliefs and cultural identities, and our celebrants can include rites and rituals of any religion in the ceremony or if preferred, create a non-religious, person-centred ceremony. Your loved one, your memories, their story, will always be at the heart of the ceremony. They will meet with you, perhaps in your own home, and spend time listening carefully to the hopes you have for the funeral ceremony. From this meeting they will begin to write the ceremony and make any changes to the structure as you wish. They gently offer ideas and suggestions, help with your choice of music and readings and they write a bespoke ceremony reflecting everything you have spoken about. Our celebrants will then conduct the ceremony in a professional yet sensitive way.
In addition to our group of ARKA celebrants we work with some talented people who are independent but still work hard to support families to put together meaningful, beautiful tributes in honour of the person who has died. We work with a really wide range of people and will work as effectively with a celebrant or minister of your choice as the people we work with regularly.
Please meet our ARKA celebrants:
Wendy’s background as a music therapist brings empathy, sensitivity and compassion to her work at ARKA. Wendy grew up as a Christian, and feels particularly at ease in this tradition. However, her spiritual practise today, as an ordained Interfaith minister, combines elements from many traditions and faiths. She is also happy to help create ceremonies which make no mention of faith, which simply and beautifully celebrate the person and their life.
A member of the ARKA team since our first year, Belinda is highly skilled in creating beautiful funeral ceremonies which truly reflect the life and passions of the person who has died. She feels that a good ceremony can change the way people come to terms with grief, strengthen their relationships, and in many circumstances, go through a life changing transition. Putting together a ceremony helps families recognise the great sadness that people feel as well as helping them to celebrate the life that has been lived.
Rebecca is an ordained Interfaith Minister and Spiritual Counsellor. Rebecca offers heart felt and compassionate services to people from all walks of life. She works for ARKA both, as a funeral celebrant and funeral arranger. Rebecca has been conducting different types of ceremonies since the early 1990’s, and became ordained as an Interfaith Minister in 2006. Interfaith Ministers offer spiritual services to people from all faiths or none.
Julie feels blessed and honoured to have the opportunity to work with families and individuals to create beautiful funeral ceremonies. She believes that it’s important that you take as much time as is needed to be sure that everything is just as you want it to be; whether the ceremony that’s right for you or your loved one is wildly creative, very simple or anything in between, she will ensure that it is always intensely personal and beautiful.
Peter has been a Celebrant for over ten years and is very proud of his work for ARKA. He comes from a theatre background, so is an experienced public speaker. He is there to speak on your behalf. His priority is always to create and conduct a funeral ceremony that sensitively acknowledges your great sadness, and celebrates the special life of your loved one. He will help you find words and music of your own choosing so that the ceremony reflects all that is precious about the life just ended.
Peter Owen Jones works as a parish priest. He is also a presenter for the BBC, working on programmes such as ‘Around the World in Eighty Faiths’ and ‘How to live a simple life’. In his work for the BBC he has experienced many different faith perspectives, and taken part in many different ceremonies. It is this unique combination of experience that has led him to our door.
River Jones is an independent celebrant. She is a member of the Fellowship of Professional Celebrants, River is passionate about upholding the motto of ‘respecting all faiths and none’, and creating ceremonies where everyone can feel welcome and relaxed. She is also a member of the Order of Bards, Ovates and Druids and very happy to draw on the inspiration of the natural world in her work.