Monica Hatch has served as a cantor and soloist for both religious and non-religious funerals for more than three decades.
In recent years while singing for funerals, Monica became aware of the needs of people who had no religious or theological affiliation seeking to memorialize a loved one who had died. Many of these people did not have clergy to call upon in their time of need but wanted to mark that person's passing in a special way.
In order to meet this need, Monica became a Certified Funeral Celebrant through the InSight Institute. Becoming a Funeral Celebrant was a natural extension of the musical services she currently provides.
As a Funeral Celebrant, Monica is prepared to meet the needs of people who may neither want nor have access to traditional liturgical ceremonies, or who may want something in addition to a conventional religious service.
What is a Funeral Celebrant?
A Funeral Celebrant is a non-clergy specialist who prepares, organizes and officiates funerals and remembrance services, which may or may not be associated with any organized religion or theology.
It is important to note that Monica is not ordained clergy, Justice of the Peace, a licensed grief counselor or a funeral director. Nor will she ever act as a substitute for any of these roles or services.
What does a Funeral Celebrant offer the family?
First Monica will meet with your family to offer gentle guidance in the planning of the funeral service from start to finish. This meeting will give your family an opportunity to share stories and memories that can be woven into the service if the family desires.
Monica has extensive resources including readings, music and other special elements to help design a service that honors the life of your loved one and best suits the needs of your family.
After the family meeting, Monica will write the tribute, then work with the funeral director on coordinating the particulars of the service.
Finally, Monica will deliver the tribute at the chosen venue freeing your family of any worries regarding the details of the service.
How are you different from other Celebrants?
In many instances Funeral Celebrants offer a standard prewritten service in which they simply insert the name of the departed, say a few prayers, sing a hymn and give a blessing. While respectful, these services rarely include personal references to that individual.
Monica recognizes that your loved one is unique and cherished. Therefore, she will take the time to meet with your family to gather personal memories, stories. readings and songs that capture the individuality and life of that person into a lasting tribute.
Who could benefit from using a Funeral Celebrant?
• Those who identify themselves as atheist or “spiritual but not religious”
• Those who do not have a minister or church affiliation but would like a faith centered experience
• Those wanting something in addition to or in place of a religious service
• Those wanting a unique, personalized service
• Those wanting a Life Tribute during the calling hours preceding a liturgical service